When debating over which wines to serve for this Thanksgiving dinner, consider offerings from across the USA and the globe. Thanksgiving is a meal of many flavors—from Aunt Edna’s Jell-O mold to cousin Otis’ spicy sausage stuffing—and it becomes almost impossible to find a wine that plays well with everything. Serve a selection this year, rather than committing to just one red and one white. I suggest opening the bottles, lining them up on the counter and encouraging guests to self-serve. I typically write a note or two for each bottle explaining what it pairs best with and let guests decide what suits them best.
A few other thoughts: avoid overly-tannic reds, as they will overpower most Thanksgiving fare; chill the reds a bit before serving (15 minutes in the fridge); one 750ml standard size bottle of wine generally serves about 5 people–unless they are Irish and from my family, then all bets are off. Cheers!
OREGON–2013 Kramer Sparkling Rose of Pinot Noir: A juicy, fun, sparkler—more in the prosecco style–with ripe raspberry, strawberry notes. Sippy and playful, this is a great one to start the party with.
WASHINGTON—2012 Charles and Charles Merlot. A merlot-based red blend with nice blue fruits, some mocha and spices and a bit of juiciness. The soft tannins make this wine quite drinkable before and during the party.
CALIFORNIA—2011 Peay Vineyards, Les Titans Syrah. This is a classic cool climate syrah so don’t expect over-ripe plums and meaty notes. Instead you’ll find blueberry and some black fruits on the palate. There is a nice silky thread throughout each sip but this wine is quite precise and fine. Grown near giant redwood trees only 4 miles from the Pacific Ocean, it is named for the redwoods that flank the vineyard. Serve this with the roasted bird.
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Katie Kelly Bell