As you prepare for Thanksgiving, keep these best Thanksgiving wines in mind! From whites to reds, there's something for everyone - and to pair with every dish.
Thanksgiving is next week. I have to keep repeating it in my head and out loud: Thanksgiving is next week. I can hardly believe it!
While I have plenty of Thanksgiving dish recipes, like my Butternut Squash, Mushroom, and Sage Hand Pies and my Mini Pecan Pies, I also know many of you may be planning what sort of wines to serve at Thanksgiving. Here are my top picks for 2016!
We'll start where all good meals and especially all good gatherings should start: with bubbly.
The 2015 Graham Beck Brut Rosé is one of my favorites. Recently, I had the opportunity to meet the winemaker, Pieter Ferreira, at the Angela Estate Winery tasting room in Dundee, Oregon. What a treat! We started our tasting with this beautiful sparkling wine, with its bright cherry and raspberry notes and gorgeous color.
For Thanksgiving, serve a glass of these happy bubbles to guests as soon as they enter the room. You can also pair it with your Thanksgiving Day appetizers, such as shrimp canapés or melon, mozarella, and prosciutto salad.
OTHER BUBBLE FAVORITES: the Soter Vineyards Brute Rosé ($63) and the Evolution Sparkling Wine ($18). Read more about both sparkling wines.
One of my favorite white wines is MADE for Thanksgiving dinner. Normally, I would NOT recommend a Chardonnay to serve at Thanksgiving. A traditional California-style oaky, buttery chardonnay would likely overpower and contrast with the flavors of Thanksgiving. However, a stainless steel Chardonnay is fantastic for this occasion.
The 2015 Dundee Hills Chardonnay by Stoller Family Estate ($25) is one of the best Chardonnays in town. Personally, I prefer unoaked Chardonnay, and this one is light, bright, and has a little zing from the stainless steel without the full, buttery mouthfeel of oaked Chardonnay. I LOVE this Chardonnay! It would go so well with a kale and apple salad, or with your main Thanksgiving turkey. It is also a delicious accompaniment to traditional Thanksgiving desserts like pumpkin pie and apple pie.
The 2015 Pinot Blanc from Willamette Valley Vineyards ($24/bottle) is a beautiful straw color and the wine opens with fall pear and dried lavender notes. It would be fantastic with your turkey, but also pair it with a hearty fall pear, hazelnut, and kale salad. It's a nice white wine option for those who are non-Chardonnay fans, but also don't want to go to the sweet Pinot Grigio side.
Now, Pinot Grigio is not normally a wine I would choose off the shelf. However, the LBD Pinot Grigio, with its aromas of apple, melon and lemongrass, begs to be paired with your Thanksgiving Day side dishes like green bean salad and sweet potato casserole. This could also be a delicious pairing with any turkey that has ginger, lemon, and orange flavors. The bright and zesty tangerine finish of the Pinot Grigio makes this a fabulous wine to sip during the main course.
Normally, I am a red wine drinker, no matter the weather and no matter the menu. When it comes to Thanksgiving dinner, some of the best Thanksgiving wines to serve are also the ones I would serve any day of the week. Not surprisingly, I'm recommending some Oregon Pinot Noir.
Pinot noir is FABULOUS with Thanksgiving dinners. In Oregon, Pinot Noir wines typically have bright acidity and nice fall cherry and cranberry flavors. These notes pair well with most dishes you serve at Thanksgiving.
The 2014 Evolution Pinot Noir is a STEAL at just $20 per bottle. I love the entire Evolution line for everyday wines, but this time of year, both the Evolution Sparkling and the Evolution Pinot Noir find a way onto my holiday table. This pinot has a silky smooth finish and is bursting with flavors of fall: spice, cranberry, pomegranate. Drink this with your Thanksgiving brussels sprouts salad, mashed potatoes and gravy, and your herb spiced turkey.
The 2014 Pilgrimage Oregon Pinot Noir from St. Reginald Parish is also a smooth Oregon Pinot that has similar cranberry notes but also hints of Oregon marionberry and mushroom. This also retails for around $20 per bottle, although it seems a little harder to come by these days.
Thirsty yet? Those are my top picks (out of many, many wines that I think would also be fabulous) for your Thanksgiving Day meal! You can also check out my Holiday Wine Picks and Sparkling Wine Picks for some past wines that would still be delicious with your Thanksgiving Day dinner, if they are still available. Which ones sound the most delightful to you?
What type of wine will you be serving this Thanksgiving?