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Wines for Thanksgiving

Nov. 24, 2014 – Every year it’s the same old conundrum: what wine to serve with the Thanksgiving meal. We have a couple of our own preferences but we decided to see what the “experts” were recommending.

Turns out there is absolutely no consensus. After finding 18 different recommendations for “the perfect wine”, we gave up. White wines included Champagne or Sparkling Wines, (three votes) California Chardonnay,
Gewurztraminer, Riesling, Albariño, Sauvignon Blanc, Viognier and Pinot Gris.

In the middle was Rosé with two votes.

The reds covered Pinot Noir, Italian Barbera, Syrah (two votes) Gamay Noir, Charbono, Zinfandel, Merlot and Cabernet Franc.

Based on the above, we say serve what you like and what you can afford.

For our part, wines that have worked well in the past are Champagne, Pinot Noir and a Rhone blend such as GSM, which stands for Grenache, Syrah and Mourvedre. We like the layers of flavor found in a blend like GSM. It seems to go well with the multitude of flavors on the Thanksgiving plate. We usually keep away from big Cabs and Zins although a lighter, fruity Zinfandel can work nicely. If your family and guests are not regular wine drinkers, then choose something fruity like a Gewurztraminer or Riesling. If Aunt Gert’s favorite tipple is an oaky California Chardonnay or White Zinfandel, then be a gracious host and offer it.

There’s a lot going on with a Thanksgiving meal so don’t feel obliged spend a small fortune. There are a lot a great choices in the under $15 category. Depending on your guests, you could also think about offering seasonal beer or a hard cider. After all, hard cider was the daily drink of the early colonists.

Whatever you serve, it is going to be a lovely gathering and we can all be grateful that we live in this great country.

Happy Thanksgiving!