Thanksgiving feast is a special celebration dinner that happens once each year on the last Thursday in November. The traditional menu is uniquely American and is a particular combination of offerings that seldom occurs at any other time. Even the main course of turkey is rarely featured at any other time during the year. Hence, its no surprise that the wine tasting selections to accompany the Thanksgiving meal always offer an adventurous challenge since it is a once a year feature-set.
The characteristics of turkey and stuffing lends themselves to a more neutral, acidic, non-tannic, clean and crisp fruit filled flavorful wine. Suggested offerings tend towards white wines such as Sauvignon Blanc Semillon or a more outgoing forward varietal such as a Riesling or a spicy Gewurztraminer. For red wine lovers, fruit filled moderate bodied reds go well with the dark turkey meat, sweet potatoes and stuffing.
Ryan and Michelle brought this proscuitto and cheese plate (shown left) - Bellavitano, goat cheese, cranberry sharp cheddar with red pear.
Finally, there is always a place for Champagne, especially on festive holidays, and most suitably with the white meats, hor d'ovres, appetizers and cheeses.
We pulled a somewhat eclectic flight from the cellar, highlighted by some special wines brought by Bill C and Ryan ....
NV Pierre Gimonnet Champagne Brut Blanc de Blancs Cuis 1er Cru
La Sirena Napa Valley Moscato Azul Dry Musat Canelli 2006
From the legendary winemaker Heidi Barrett's own label, she makes six wines including this one. Whimsically packaged in a blue bottle with a blue synthetic cork, this is an interesting wine that takes a while to characterize as its evolves on the pallet.
RM 89 Points.
Château Haut-Bergey Blanc Pessac-Leognan Bordeaux 2005
Dark straw colored, medium bodied, aromas and somewhat subdued flavors of wet stone, nut, melon and grapefruit - opened up a bit more with moderate peach flavors with citrus and lemon on with a crisp finish.
RM 89 points.
Bonneau du Martray Corton-Charlemagne Grand Cru Burgundy 2010
Bill also brought this from his cellar. This was a great complement to the Thanksgiving dinner features.
Light butter color, medium-light bodied, crisp and clean, complex tones of citrus, pear, nut and hints of smoke with a complex lingering finish.
RM 90 points.https://www.cellartracker.com/wine.asp?iWine=1271179
Domain Saint Damien Gigondas 2007
Bill brought this from his cellar. His tasting notes from Cellartracker. We visited Gigondas during our Rhone Valley wine experience. Sitting up in the foothills overlooking the fabled Chateauneuf-du-Pape region, Gigondas produces expressive full flavored wines that provide some of the best QPR (Quality to Price ratio) values in French wines.
Thanksgiving dinner with all the spicy dishes presents a challenge to find an appropriate accompanying wine that will not be overwhelmed by all the strong flavors. The Domaine St.-Damien nicely fit the bill. Medium red and crystal clear in the glass. Limited nose with a hint of pepper and ginger foretells what to expect. Pepper and spice on the palate, big mouth feel and a lingering finish.
WCC 90 points.
Lewis Cellars Ethan's Vineyard Napa Valley Syrah Wine 2009
Ryan brought this Syrah from Lewis cellars, producer's of one of our favorite Cabernets. It went well with the pre-dinner proscuitto and cheese plate (shown above), and even better with the chocolates after dinner. We loved it and promptly arranged to obtain some for the cellar.
Dark inky purple color, full bodied, concentrated supple tongue coating fruit filled ripe black raspberry, boysenberry and plum with tones of vanilla, spice and sweet oak with hints of licorice before yielding to a layer of mineral on the lingering smooth tannin finish.
RM 94 points.
|Selection of pie and cake desserts|