Much Ado About That Thanksgiving Wine

by Pamela

Much Ado About That Thanksgiving Wine

Wine can be a big part of the Thanksgiving dinner. But all the what’s and how’s of Thanksgiving wine can be confusing. Here’s a few tips.

Here we are, just a couple of days before the big Thanksgiving dinner and plans couldn’t be further from being finished. Oh we’ve procrastinated (because that’s what we do best this time of year, been held up on our headcount for various reasons, and then there’s just the utter confusion. What am I going to serve? Should I have/let people bring stuff? And then there’s what to serve to drink? Alcohol or no alcohol? Beer, liquor or wine…or all three. And then, if we do serve wine, there’s all that wine pairing to think about. Is it too late to just cancel everything?

I am not riding in on a white horse with the ‘be all end all’ list of Thanksgiving wines that will render your guests speechless with your wine pairing prowess. Let’s face it, with the amount of food being consumed on Thanksgiving, do you really think anyone is going to be paying that much attention to your wine pairings? After about halfway through the meal, you could be serving straight up Welch’s and most of your guests wouldn’t know the difference. Some would probably ask you what vintage it was.

Here’s the other thing about pairing wines for Thanksgiving dinner…the best laid plans go right out the window when  a guest will bring a bottle of their favorite wine and be hurt if you don’t serve it with the meal. So you may have some friends that bring you an amazing bottle of Kosta Browne Pinot Noir and some friends that will bring a bottle of rot gut that was from the bargain bin at a drug store they passed on their way over. What are you going to do but roll with it.

I’m not saying that you shouldn’t bother pairing wines for Thanksgiving dinner, I would never say such blasphemous things. But I am saying that if you’re in doubt as to what you should serve, make a visit to your local wine shop, or even Trader Joe’s. Find someone that works there that you can talk to and ask them (that’s what they do all day…learn about wines and pairing wines). Tell them what your budget is and they’ll work with you on it. Not every delicious bottle of wine costs $50. There are some great tasting bargains for under $20, but you have to ask someone in the know which wine’s they are. And don’t bother bringing in the magazine article that lists fabulous Thanksgiving wines because you’ll either find that the wines aren’t available yet or you can’t get them at your store. (This is the voice of experience talking.)

The other way to approach this is to keep an open mind. Your friends are all different from one another and they have different tastes. Use this as a way to try some different wines and experiment. Some you’ll like and some you won’t, but this is a great way to learn more about wines and your friends.

If you’re really just confused, but want to serve Thanksgiving wines your safe bets are Chardonnay for white or a nice Pinot Noir for a red. I prefer a good Pinot with my Thanksgiving dinner because it goes so well with all the rich foods that are on the table.

Have a Happy Thanksgiving!

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2 comments

iris wolfson November 25, 2017 at 1:23 pm

I tried to search for a recipe from last year but the search icon doesn’t allow me to search!

Pamela November 25, 2017 at 1:38 pm

Hi Iris, try it again…it seems to be working on my end. What recipe are you looking for. Maybe I can help you.

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