When it comes to our holiday meals there are many things we leave until the last minute, and we shouldn’t. It could be the cranberry sauce. Who was supposed to bring that? News flash – nobody wants to bring it because no one wants to eat it. Whipped cream for the pumpkin pie! Who was supposed to grab that? Speaking of whipped cream, make your own if possible. It’s incredibly easy and the fresher, “clean” flavor will impress!
What’s usually left out is any planning for the dinner beverage. We know Uncle Bob will grab a half rack of Budweiser or bring that infamous bottle of homemade mystery wine. This isn’t right people. We need to treat our Thanksgiving dinner beverage like the stuffing – a perfect side dish.
You don’t have to be a sommelier to choose the perfect wine to serve with your holiday meal and it doesn’t have to be a daunting task. In fact, turkey is one of the easiest meats to pair with wine. If you haven’t noticed, turkey is really not that exciting unless you jazz it up a little bit. Smoke it, deep fry it, brine it (my personal favorite method) or baste it in butter and herbs. Something has to be done before turkey can really get your attention.
Are you traditional or non-traditional when it comes to picking your turkey wine? Let’s see what Amitie Wine Company has to offer…
For you red wine lovers, pinot noir is an excellent pick. Some pinots, especially those from the central coastal region of California or Russian River, have a tendency to be a little smoky and more fruit forward. Oregon pinots can be a touch lighter in body, but rich in flavor and have higher acidity. For a traditional pick, I recommend Portlandia Pinot Noir, OR ($17) – a 2020 Wine Enthusiast Top 10 Oregon Pinots for Value. For the non-traditional I recommend the Poderi Ella Dolcetto D’Alba, Italy ($16) as it is similar to a pinot in that it’s light in body with solid acidity, but it also has a distinct earthiness with notes of baking spice and cherry almond flavors. If you want a little more fruit and spice, look for a petite sirah or zinfandel. While their flavor profiles don’t match up to cranberry sauce, they contribute the same kind of zest that can pull more taste out of your turkey. I like the Cline Ancient Vine Zinfandel, CA ($17) or the Three of Cups “Le Croyant” Petitie Sirah, WA ($16).
Leaning towards the non-traditional, I highly suggest having some fun with the Flegenheimer Sparkling Shiraz, Australia ($17). Yes, I said SPARKLING SHIRAZ! Big, rich black fruits that pair tightly with the dense, high tannic structure of this shiraz. Black pepper, anise and tobacco play evenly throughout the palate, ending with blackberry preserves and a lingering finish. It’s weird and wonderful!
Drier versions of riesling and viognier are my perfect white choices for the bird. These varietals have a lovely floral character and hearty body that compliment the turkey, but can stand up to the heavier sides like stuffing, potatoes, gravy, and even Brussels sprouts. I suggest the Sobon Estate Viognier, CA ($18) or the Trisaetum Coast Range Dry Riesling, OR ($25). Maybe shake it up instead with the Zolo Torrontes, Argentina ($11) or the Protos Verdejo, Spain ($15).
Want something in between? Think pink. Sparkling or still, you can’t go wrong with rosé. It really IS the ultimate Thanksgiving wine. What’s great about rosé is that it can come in just about any red varietal. I recommend rosé of pinot noir, grenache, or syrah. Here at AWC we like the classic dry style of the Gard Rosé Grand Klasse Reserve, WA ($16) (HINT- THIS IS $500 OFF NOW!) or for more of a fruity style, go with the Cline Cashmere Rosé, CA ($10).
These are just a few of the many terrific options we have available at Amitie Wine Company. We love your questions, so never stop asking especially when you are shopping for your holiday beverage(s). Finding the perfect wine will make your meal very memorable and much more tasty!
Don’t forget we have a robust online store where you can pre-purchase your wine. We can even meet you curbside so you don’t have to get out of your car! So with that said, have a
happy and safe Thanksgiving everybody. Masks down, forks up!