Thanksgiving in the United States is a very big deal: lots of food, lots of family, and American football. It is a fuelling day for the biggest shopping day of the year, Black Friday. It is also a day when people consume lots of great alcoholic beverages.
This Thanksgiving, put down the beer and cork the whiskey. Try some of the best American wines to go with the turkey, cranberry sauce, and stuffing.
Echelon Chardonnay – Made with 4% Gewürztraminer grapes, this is a slightly spicy wine with lemon and apricot flavours. It is perfect as an appetiser wine with canapés or even ‘potato chips’.
Folie à Deux Ménage à Trois White – A blend of Muscat, Chenin Blanc and Chardonnay grapes, this is a bright, tropical wine. Never oaked, but aged in stainless steel, this wine is profoundly crisp and light. Serve with the main dinner or as a cocktail-hour pleasure.
Konstantin Frank/Vinifera Cellars Salmon Run Riesling – This is a pear and stone fruit flavoured wine with light notes. It comes from upstate New York in the Finger Lakes region and represents some of the best that this grape has to offer. This is excellent if your main course includes seafood.
Clos du Bois North Coast Syrah – A perfect red for almost anything, for Thanksgiving, its oaky notes and light fruit flavour can be served during dinner or afterwards with pumpkin or apple pies.
Beringer California Cabernet Sauvignon – This is a big wine with big fruity flavours. Blackberry and cherry, plus an oaky shadow, make this a perfect wine with dinner to stand up to the turkey, the gravy and stuffing.
Wind Gap Pinot Noir – A little higher priced than the rest, this wine is produced at a small Californian vineyard. Bright cherry fruit with a citrus backing make this an ideal wine for after dinner or even before. It is light enough to not destroy the palate for all of the great food.
Sparkling & Desert Wine
Breathless NV Brut Sparkling – With fine bubbles and rich flavours, this is a light and elegant way to end dinner. Red cherry, apple, cinnamon and stone fruits are all evident in this excellent sparkling wine.
Francis Ford Coppola 2013 Sofia Blanc de Blancs Sparkling – Pear cider and apple blossoms with a slight chalk flavour make this very light sparkling wine an extraordinary bargain. There are some lime flavours that reduce the sweetness and level off the wine.
Chateau Ste Michelle Eroica Riesling Ice Wine – This is an extraordinary finish to any meal, but Thanksgiving’s big flavours are no match for an ice wine. Harvested after the grapes have been naturally frozen, this is a sweet and fruity wine that has flavours of apricot and honey.
Quady Winery’s Starboard Batch 88 – This is port-style wine that has the fruitiness of a ruby port and the nuttiness of a tawny. It is an excellent American take on a European classic. It’s a wonderful and inexpensive after-dinner cocktail that is an ideal way to wind down during the game.