So, if you’re a turkey, this probably isn’t a good time for you. Our condolences. But for us humans , we can’t help but get all giddy at the thought of long days spent lounging, nibbling and, of course, imbibing. It’s almost enough to make us want to stop and give thanks, in the very least to the turkey. Therefore to show it the respect it deserves, we’re putting together a delicious holiday meal. OK, actually we’re not putting it together (thanks mom) but we will be bringing some wines worthy of the occasion.
The trap that most people fall into when buying wine for Thanksgiving is that they pay too much attention to the bird. Not to cast the guest of honor aside, but let’s not forget all of those delicious sides - the cornucopia of flavors, textures and aromas that you may be neglecting. It’s a sommelier’s smorgasboard. This year, why not cater to them all?
Make the cranberry sauce pop:
2004 Altos de Luzon, Jumilla, Spain, Approx. $13
The soft black currant and cherry aromas accented by earth and smoke amplify the fruit notes while the acidity and alcohol stand up nicely to the tartness in the sauce.
Stuffing seeking soul mate:
2001 Louis Latour Pommard AC, Burgundy, France, Approx. $30
Whether your stuffing has sausage or mushrooms, there is usually a great earthy, nutty character to it that makes it the perfect comfort food and the first thing to go at the meal. For us, it has to be a great Pinot Noir. It’s warming, earthy with several layers of flavors in a soft, velvet texture. Delicious, and it would have to be to stand up to the stuffing.
Candied Yams with a healthy helping of butter:
2004 Stags Leap Chardonnay, Napa, USA, Approx. $24
There are very few things that can make yams taste more delectable - marshmallows, brown sugar and butter are the first to come to mind. So when it came to the wine pairing, it’s not surprising that we went for this Napa chardonnay that has just the right amount of butter notes. This full-bodied chardonnay is not dominated by strong oak notes. There is a subtlety and minerality to it that is reminiscent of a white Burgundy.
It’s hard not to have a tasty Thanksgiving Day meal with all those decadent sides and juicy, tender turkey, but with creative wine pairings and really big glasses it becomes damn-near impossible.