In the USA we love to celebrate our holidays with good food and drink. Thanksgiving is no different, but the feast is separates it from our warm weather holidays. Memorial Day, Fourth of July and Labor Day are celebrated with barbeques so we can enjoy beautiful summer days. Thanksgiving with it cooler days forces us inside so firing up the oven is no problem. While the dinner table may be filled with different foods good wine is still in order.
Sparkling wine to get the diners appetites in full swing, Biltmore Estate Château Reserve, Blanc de Blanc, North Carolina, 2011 is the perfect starter. Of course the Biltmore Estate Blanc de Blanc with its crisp acidity will also pair well with plenty of plates throughout the whole meal.
White wine plays a big role to round out the meal as well. A classic California wine is always welcome at the table. Robert Mondavi Winery, Fumé Blanc, Napa Valley, CA, 2014 is the perfect foil for many of the dishes served. Isabel Mondavi, Carneros, Chardonnay represents the next generation of the Mondavi family and shows how dedicated to producing great California wines the family still is. Biltmore Estate, Antler Hill, Chardonnay, Russian River Valley, California, 2012 relies on great fruit to make a very Thanksgiving food friendly wine.
Red wines are always welcome as the meal runs on. While Zinfandel can trace its roots back to Europe, it is considered the all American grape. Plungerhead, Zinfandel, Lodi, CA, 2013 has nice spiciness without being to heavy so it won’t overwhelm any lighter dishes being served. Pinot Noir with its bright fruit and light tannins also work great. Moobuzz, Pinot Noir, Monterrey, CA, 2013 also has a great earthiness that works fantastic with all fall root vegetables. Too add a fuller red wine to the table pour some Franciscan Estate, Cabernet Sauvignon, Napa Valley, CA 2013, with a perfumed nose, upfront fruit on the palate and smooth tannins. To go big enjoy Animo, Cabernet Sauvignon, Atlas Peak, Napa Valley, CA, 2010, another fantastic wine from Michael Mondavi and his family.
For dessert we can remember our neighbors to the north, before states and borders were established. Niagara-on the –Lake, officially in Canada is home to Inniskillin, home to some of the worlds most sought after ice wines. The grapes for ice wine are left on the vine until the first freeze. The grapes by the first freeze have started to shrivel and lose water, leaving grapes high in sugar. The grapes are pressed and the results are a delicious sweet wine perfect for Thanksgiving pies.
Happy Thanksgiving everyone!