Somm in the city

Published on November 9th, 2017

Staff Selections: Thanksgiving Picks

We’ve swirled, sipped, sniffed and tasted hundreds of wines. Here, we list for you our top Thanksgiving wine selections. This is what our talented wine staff will be drinking with their families this Holiday. Read below for these tried and true wine pairings.

 

SHANNON’S PICKS

Becco Rosso Dry Lambrusco, Italy   $12.99 Forget what you know about Lambrusco; this is dry, I promise! I can’t think of anything better for Thanksgiving than a punchy, sparkly red. So festive, fun and a delight to drink.

Brundlmayer Brut Rose, Austria $36.99 Willi Brundlmayer is recognised as one of Austria’s top winemakers. This wine is in a league of its own. Tastes like strawberries and cream.

Banshee Chardonnay Sonoma Coast 1.5L Magnum, $27.98  I love Chardonnay in the fall. Fresh apple and cider flavors combine perfectly with a touch of oak. A balanced domestic Chard worth twice this humble price. A magnum is definitely in order when my family is around.

Meslerie Vouvray 2009, $35.99  Drinking beautifully right now. Perfectly aged, it is extremely expressive and lithely fruity.

Domaine Chignard Julienas Beauvernay 1.5L Magnum, $49.99  Ain’t no party like a magnum party. This is the Thanksgiving juice. Fresh, lively, excellent with an assortment of dishes and won’t compete with anything for flavor dominance. Made by a 4th generation winemaker, and imported by Kermit Lynch.

NICOLE’S PICKS

For Thanksgiving, I like wines that can run the marathon of the whole day and can go with many different types of food. For starters, make a Mimosa with the Conca d’Oro Prosecco in the morning. It’s a great way to start any holiday and helps with being in the kitchen preparing your meal or dish you will be bringing to your friend &/or family gathering later that evening. Keep the bubbles chilled throughout the day because sparking wine is a great palate cleanser and can go with anything! It can also stand up and is bold enough for everything on the table. Plus, this day is all about celebrating what we are thankful for!
I also always like to have a nice Riesling and Pinot Noir readily available for Thanksgiving. For the white, choose a nice dry Riesling from Germany. Dry Riesling is a very good, food-friendly option and my go-to for many different types of food pairings (especially some of the harder-to-pair items). Since there will be so many different things on the table, I will be bringing the Jakob Schneider Melaphyr Trocken (dry) Riesling. It is the perfect affordable Dry German Riesling. It is high acidity which means that will keep your mouth watering all meal long (and keep you wanting to eat and drink more!). It also has nice citrus notes with a good balance of minerality for this price range. This wine is definitely meant to go with food.
If you want something that can be more for all day drinking (while also being slightly sweeter and a real crowd pleaser), try the Kung Fu Girl from Washington State. It is fruity, with a little minerality, and very smooth finish. It is great for a large crowd, super easy drinking, and an amazing price right now!
For a red, Pinot Noir is your go-to grape for the holiday. One of my favorites is the R. Stuart Vignette from the Willamette Valley in Oregon. It is a nice, light, clean red that can go with a lot of different types of food. Some pinots can be major cherry bombs; however, for this meal, I like this one that is more delicate with raspberry, little cranberry notes, and subtle herbs. It has a light amount of tannin and some acidity so it can stand up to the turkey. It also has a very smooth mouthfeel and won’t be too overwhelming with all the rest of the delicious goodies on the table.
Finish the meal with another glass of Prosecco with dessert (and while you sit on the couch and relax after the filing meal).
Cheers and Happy Thanksgiving!
Prosecco: Conca d’Oro, Italy, $12.98
Dry Riesling: Jakob Schneider’s Melaphyr, Germany, 2015, $12.99
Off-Dry Riesling: Kung Fu Girl, Washington State, 2016, $8.98
Pinot Noir: R. Stuart Vignette, Willamette Valley in Oregon, 2013, $20.99

GORDON’S PICKS

Raventos i Blanc L’Hereu Cava ($19.99)

Bubbly always lends a festive feel to holiday gatherings, and this Spanish sparkler delivers outstanding flavor and depth for a modest price. The bright fruit notes are balanced with a light yeasty component usually present only in much more expensive sparkling wine.

Chateau du Saint-Amour Saint-Amour 2015 ($19.99) –
The lively berry notes in this Beaujolais are only the beginning; there are layers of flavor and great balance, too. This would be a great pairing for your turkey, and you’re likely to want to keep drinking it long after the meal is over.
Castello Di Albola Chianti Classico 2013 ($13.99) –
A nice value in top-shelf Chianti, this wine brings dark-cherry notes and light tannins that provide a little more weight than many typical Thanksgiving wines. If you’re serving ham, you couldn’t ask for a better match.

SARAH’S PICKS

Tiamo Prosecco :

A lovely drink to start the festivities and perfectly balanced to see it through. Delicate bubbles, fresh and fruity. Excellent aperitif, particularly pairs well with shellfish, seafood and veggie appetizers.

 

Pike Road Pinot Gris : ($12.99)

A white wine to please everyone at the Thanksgiving table. Biscuit & fresh peach aroma. Rich texture with citrus, lychee and subtle tropical flavors. Excellent value for the quality.

Diora Three Crowns Red Blend: ($22.99)

Okay, this might be a strange pick for Thanksgiving dinner but since I like the dark meat, sausage and mushroom dressing and nothing sweet to touch my plate I deserve this full bodied red blend. Although robust this wine has subtle layers of intensity, dark fruit, pepper and soft tannins. Lovely hostess gift (hint).

JENN’S PICKS

Trefethen Dry Riesling, Napa Valley 2016 $25.99

This wine offers aromas of jasmine and orange blossom, while the palate gives way to bright apple, lime and guava. This is a fresh and flavorful wine, with a mouthwatering acidity and a refreshing minerality that animates the wine’s long, lively finish.

Muller Gewurztraminer Germany 2016 $20.99

Those who work with me know that one of my soft spots is the Gewurztraminer grape. Generally a very aromatic wine, this one offers more lychee and salt than roses. While it does offer some ‘sweetness’, it isn’t very sweet.

Chateau de Saint Amour Beaujolais 2015 $19.99

Rich, silky and elegant, this wine show complex aromas of ripe red fruit, especially cherry, which follow through to the palate and play out in a very pleasing finish.

Pike Road Pinot Noir Willamette Valley Oregon, $18.99

New to us from Elk Cove, this is a beautifully made Willamette Pinot to try for Thanksgiving. It offer fresh cranberries and raspberries, framed by herb-tinged tannins.

 

BOB’S PICKS

1. Are you a turkey thigh and leg person? I am. Raphet Passetoutgrains (pass tu gran), a combination of Pinto Noir and Gamay from Burgundy is a perfect match. I have at times aspired to choose higher priced wine for special occasions but this wine is my choice for Thanksgiving.

2. So I hear your not a dark meat fan. It’s ok. Grab a glass of Chenin Blanc from Greg and party down. Greg Graziano does Chenin Blanc like a maestro. It dances on your palate like a prima at the Bolshoi.
3. OK so Uncle Bob over did it on turkey day. Conger up a little concoction of OJ and Concha D’ Oro Prosecco  (Pro-Say-Co) and convince  him it’s the perfect remedy.  He will thank you later and maybe even include you in his will.

ALFONSE’S PICKS

Conca d’Oro d’o Prosecco-   Dry bright and clean with small bubbles and soft finish. Built for appetizers and mimosas’. $12.98
H&M Hofer Gruner Veltliner-  Bone dry and refreshing with racy acidity and a mouth watering finish. Built for turkey! $14.99  —- 1Liter
Gerard Raphet PASSETOUTGRAINS Red Burgundy-  Medium bodied with cherry notes and hints of cinnamon. Well balanced acidity with a smooth clean finish. Built for a feast. $13.99
H&M Hofer Zweigelt-  PARTY WINE! 1 Liter means 1 extra glass per bottle. Beautiful and sultry with complex black fruits and spicebox hints. Perfect acidity and big mouthfeel seal the deal. Go Austria! $14.99— 1Liter

MIKE’S PICKS

St Gregory Pinotrois- it covers all the bases for me as being a fun and easy drinking wine that will kill it with turkey.
Meinklang Blaufrankisch- because I have a soft spot for blaufrankisch and I am a fan of how the Michlits family runs an organic cattle farm to make fertilizer for their organic grapes.
Conca d’oro Prosecco- because it pairs well with every celebration and any of my cousins bad stories at thanks giving dinner.

RICHARD’S PICKS

Les Pallieres Rose.  This dry rose is a great wine for Thanksgiving.
It pairs well with savory foods on the table but will not overpower
the star of the show – the turkey.
Raventos L’Hereu.  Serve the this clean and delicious Spanish sparkler
before, during and after Thanksgiving dinner.  The closest thing to
fine champagne at this price point.  Minerality and hints of white
flowers.
Frog’s Leap Zinfandel.  Don’t think heavy fruit bomb, think balanced
fruit forward zin with berry and spice notes, if you want to put a red
wine on the table.  Organically farmed.

DANA’S PICKS

Jezebel Blanc is an outstanding 90pt. Pinot Gris, Riesling, Gewürztraminer blend by winemaker Pam Walden. This wine is aromatic and has luscious citrus, tropical and stone fruit flavors. A refreshing apperitif, sipper, or complement to Thanksgiving’s savory fare!
In addition to their knockout Nero de Troia, Indigenous’s Barbera is another winner. Produced with no chemicals or herbicides, this Georgio Rivetti wine, has just enough oak to stand up to rich foods including turkey, or duck! It is savory and a bit rustic in character, with nice cherry notes.
If you are looking for a nice, and reasonably priced, Pinot Noir to pair with your turkey, try Owen Roes’ Sharecropper’s Pinot Noir from Willamette. The wine is bright and fruity with nice notes of cherry and cranberry.
I recently tried the Chehalem Gamay Noir, an appellation from Ribbon Ridge in Willamette, Oregon. Wynne Peterson-Nedry is the second generation winemaker at Chehalem and teams with greats Harry and Bill Stoller. I enjoyed the savory dark fruit and spice with ample acidity to make this another holiday favorite.
Looking for a sparkling wine for the holidays? Who isn’t! If you haven’t already, try the Conca d’ora Prosecco. So good, it is poured at Boca and Soto restaurants.
Another recent taste leaving me wanting more? New on our shelves, Andre Scherrer Gewürztraminer. The winemaker,Christophe Scherer, using bio-dynamic techniques, has created a classic beauty from Alsace, France,  both floral and fruity with lychee.

ZACH’S PICKS

Brouca Samso Cinsault: Light red fruits, refreshing acidity. Organically farmed, small producer very versatile with food, great as a sipper too.

Malgra Barbaresco: Feminine on the nose, masculine on the palate. Amazing price for Piemonte.

Chehalem Gamay: Light body, bright, great depth and finish. Rockstar winemaking.

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