Wine Pairings for Thanksgiving: What to Serve with Your Menu

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Thanksgiving is just around the corner, and that means it’s time to start planning your menu! This year, why not try something a little different and serve wine with your Thanksgiving dinner? Not sure which wines to choose? No problem! In this blog post, we will discuss some of the best wine pairings for Thanksgiving. We’ll also give you a few tips on how to select the right wines for your menu. So, sit back and relax – we’ve got everything you need to know!

Thanksgiving Wine Pairings

Thanksgiving is a time for family, friends, and of course, food! While choosing, preparing, and cooking the perfect Thanksgiving feast is no small task, selecting the right wines to serve with your meal doesn’t have to be difficult.

White Wine

Let’s start with white wine. When it comes to pairing white wine with food, there are a few things to keep in mind. First, you’ll want to consider the weight of the wine. Lighter-bodied white wines, like Pinot Grigio or Sauvignon Blanc, are typically best paired with lighter dishes, like salads or fish. If you’re serving heavier dishes, like roasted turkey or mashed potatoes, you’ll want to choose a fuller-bodied white wine, such as RayLen Vineyards’ Barrel Chardonnay or White Carolinius.

Next, you’ll want to think about the acidity of the wine. Wines with higher acidity levels can help to cut through rich and fatty foods. So, if your Thanksgiving feast includes some heavy dishes, like gravy or stuffing, look for a wine with higher acidity levels, such as Riesling.

Finally, you’ll want to take into account the flavor of the wine. When pairing white wine with food, you’ll want to consider both the flavors in the wine and the flavors in your dish. For example, if you’re serving a dish with citrusy or herbal flavors, look for a white wine with similar flavors, such as Sauvignon Blanc. If your dish is more savory, look for a white wine with fruity or floral notes, such as RayLen Vineyards’ White Carolinius.

Red Wine

Now let’s move on to red wine. Again, you’ll first want to consider the weight of the wine. Lighter-bodied red wines, like Pinot Noir or RayLen Vineyards’ Carolinius Red or Rosé of Cabernet Franc, are typically best paired with turkey or ham. If you’re serving roast beef or lamb, you’ll want to choose a fuller-bodied red wine, such as Cabernet Sauvignon.

As we mentioned earlier, wines with higher acidity levels can help to contrast nicely with rich and fatty foods and help refresh the palette. If your Thanksgiving feast includes some traditionally heavy dishes, like gravy and stuffing, look for a wine with higher acidity levels, such as RayLen Vineyards’ Category 5.

Finally, we look at the flavor of the wine. If your Thanksgiving menu is going to have earthy or spicy flavors, look for a red wine with similar flavors, such as Merlot. If your dish is more fruity or sweet, look for a red wine with darker fruit flavors, such as Cabernet Sauvignon.

Pairing Wine with Thanksgiving Dessert

No Thanksgiving feast is complete without dessert! When it comes to pairing wine with dessert, there are a few things to keep in mind. First, you’ll want to consider the sweetness of the wine. Dessert wines, like Port or Sauternes, are typically much sweeter than other types of wine. So, if your dessert is on the sweeter side, look for a wine that can stand up to its sweetness, such as Port or Madeira. If your dessert is not as sweet, you can choose a less sweet wine, such as Sauvignon Blanc or Fizzzy Rosé.

Pumpkin pie tends to be the dessert of choice on Thanksgiving. When pairing wine with pumpkin pie, look for a wine with higher acidity levels, such as Riesling, to help reduce the sweetness of the pie. Wines with spicy notes are preferable when pairing with pumpkin pie. They will mingle beautifully with the notes of cinnamon, nutmeg and ginger you taste in every bite.

Tips for Selecting Thanksgiving Wines

Now that you know a little bit about pairing white and red wines with Thanksgiving dishes and desserts, here are a few tips to help you select the right wines for your menu:

  1. Start with the turkey. The type of turkey you’re serving (roasted, smoked, etc.) will be the starting point for choosing your wines. From there, you can select wines that will complement the flavors of your turkey and other dishes.
  2. Consider your side dishes. In addition to the main course, you’ll also want to take into account your side dishes when selecting wines. For example, if you’re serving a green vegetable dish, you might want to choose a wine with herbal notes, such as Sauvignon Blanc. If you’re serving a sweeter dish, like yams or pumpkin pie, you might want to choose a dessert wine, or a wine with high acidity levels like Riesling.
  3. Don’t be afraid to experiment. Thanksgiving is the perfect time to try something new, so don’t be afraid to experiment with your wine choices. If you’re not sure what to choose, ask your local vineyard and winery, like RayLen Vineyards & Winery, for recommendations. We’re always happy to help!

Thanksgiving is a time to relax and enjoy good food and good wine with family and friends. So, don’t stress too much about choosing the perfect wines. Just have fun and enjoy the holiday!

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