Great Wines for the Holidays ( +5 Easy Holiday Recipes)
Holiday dinners at my house are a big affair. There's a lot of eating and a lot of drinking involved. Always the gracious host, I like to be sure I have a nice selection of different kinds of wine on hand.
Finding the right wine to go with roasted turkey is really not that challenging. It's finding the right wine that will go with all the side dishes; the gravy, the stuffing, the potatoes. It's really a mishmash of flavors side-by-side on the dining room table. Having the right selection of wine is important.
In our house our favorites dishes tend to be the caramelized brussels sprouts, herb seasoned stuffing with apples and bacon, Gruyere and cheddar scalloped potatoes, chocolate bourbon pecan pie and my rustic apple crumble tart. If it's your first time making the turkey be sure to check out my Easy Turkey 101 tutorial.
Now back to the wine. The right selection means the right balance of flavors. Something that's not too light or too heavy. Something that's not too acidic or heavy on the tannins. You want the right wine that complements everything on that table including the turkey.
Here's my list of favorites ranging from rosé to red and inexpensive to pricey. And don't forget the essential tools you'll need for all that wine. Check out the necessities in my Amazon Store. Have a happy Thanksgiving!
Chateau de Segries Tavel Rosé 2012 - Rosé from Tavel, Rhone, France - $20
The Wine Advocate - Possessing a deep raspberry color, the superb 2012 Tavel is loaded with ripe black cherries, lavender and melon like aromas and flavors that give way to a substantial, rich, yet pure and classy palate. A big rosé, it stays beautifully fresh and lively.
Miraval Rose 2014 - Rosé from Provence, France -$25
The Wine Advocate - The finest rosé yet from this estate (the wine is made by the top notch team at Chateau Beaucastel), the light pink colored 2014 Cotes de Provence Rosé sports a fresh and lively bouquet of wild strawberries, raspberries and white flowers to go with a supple, lightly textured, silky and seamless feel on the palate. About as gulp-able and hard to resist as they come, it's a killer rosé to drink over the coming 6-8 months.
Cottesbrook Sparkling Sauvignon Blanc 2012 - Marlborough, New Zealand - $15
Total Wine - “A fresh, zingy sparkler for any occasion, this Sparkling Sauvignon Blanc displays tropical fruit nuances of passion fruit and pear on the palate. Serve chilled and enjoy anytime!”
Fritz 2012 Russian River Valley Chardonnay - California - $25
Fritz – This 2012 Russian River Valley Chardonnay contains a tantalizing array of aromas and flavors. Pale golden in color it entices with aromas of wet limestone and apricot, with hints of melon and sweet pea flowers. This medium bodied Chardonnay is silky on the palate with bright acidity with a rich and creamy texture containing flavors of apricot, dried fruits and almonds. These flavors carry through with a satisfying finish.
2010 Robledo Tempranillo – Napa Valley, California - $35
Robledo - A deep rich, ruby color with aromas of spicy cherry and layers of blackberry, cracked pepper and a hint of toasty vanilla. A defined richness and acidity gives it a nicely balanced mouth feel.
Willamette Valley Vineyards Whole Cluster – Oregon - 2012 - $20
Wine.com - This wine opens with vibrant and explosive aromas of cherry and raspberry that leap from the glass. Flavors mirror aromas of red and dark fruits, hibiscus and melon highlighted by leathery cigar and tobacco overtones. The mouthfeel is soft, juicy and well-rounded with fresh acidity. The velvety tannins focus on a silky mouthwatering finish, inviting the second sip.
Francis Coppola Director's Sonoma Coast Pinot Noir 2013 – Sonoma County, California - $20
Winemaker’s Notes - The 2013 Director’s Pinot Noir offers an alluring fragrance of cherries, strawberries, and raspberries along with pervasive scents of spice and toffee. First impressions boast lush, juicy berry nuances while soft, round tannins frame vibrant flavors of cranberry, nutmeg, and coriander. The wine’s bright acidity and modest alcohol level help lengthen the finish where lingering notes of cherry and spicy oak unfold.
Zolo Reserva Malbec 2012 – Malbec from Argentina - $19
Wine Spectator - A deeply colored and robust red, with a core of lusciously spiced dark plum, blackberry and dark currant flavors that are long and pure. Medium-grained tannins and firm acidity lend this a muscular structure. The rich finish is filled with dark chocolate and Asian spice notes. Drink now through 2020.
The Counselor Alexander Valley Cabernet Sauvignon 2013 - Sonoma County, California - $32
Wine.com - Winemaker Nick Goldschmidt and the 2013 The Counselor Cabernet are one and the same. This is a complete Cabernet that rises to the top of other Alexander Valley efforts. Deep ruby, black color; exploding ripe fruit in the nose, with hints of sweet earth, dust and cocoa powder, very fine depth; medium bodied, firm, well built and textured on the palate, sweet tannins are perfectly balanced in this wine; smashed plums and sweet dust in the flavors; long finish, lingering lusty note in the aftertaste. Drinking nicely now, will improve over the next half-a-dozen years.
Gundlach Bundschu Cabernet Sauvignon 2012 - Sonoma County, California - $40
Wine.com – Deep ruby, blackish and almost opaque; rich, ripe fruit, cassis aroma, excellent depth, some dust; medium bodied, firm and finely structured on the palate, sweet tannins are in abundance; dry, medium acidity, well balanced; black fruit, tar and sweet oak show up in the flavor department, youthful, with excellent potential for marrying well; medium finish, almost lusty in the aftertaste.
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