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Wine Pairings for Thanksgiving

Wine Pairings for Thanksgiving

As our Livermore Valley vineyards start to flush with amber and gold, we’re reminded that Thanksgiving planning is officially upon us, in all its wonderfully manic glory. Of course, we love any excuse to gather around the table, but Thanksgiving’s unique cornucopia of dishes always presents us, wine lovers, with the quandary of what to pair with so much flavor variety!

We’re not huge fans of strict wine pairing rules, but if you’ve ever visited our Tasting Lounge, you know how a thoughtfully chosen wine has the potential to transform and elevate even the simplest of ingredients. So, instead of resigning yourself to the last-minute grocery store guessing game, why not limit decision fatigue and leave the pairings to us?

Wente Vineyards has got you covered with an expertly selected bundle of wines we’re offering for just $140. Every bottle has been hand-picked to complement various Thanksgiving courses, so you can uncork with confidence, knowing that each wine is poised to wow your guests with every perfectly paired sip.

As a rule of thumb, lighter dishes tend to pair best with lighter, more refreshing wines. The first wine in the bundle – 2021 Niki’s Rose – is perfect with hors d’oeuvres and appetizers. This rosé of Pinot Noir opens with ripe strawberries and a rose petal aromas that carry through the palate, with a mouthwatering finish that begs for another taste. A fennel salad with shaved pecorino is always a win with this wine. However, it would be excellent paired with Manchego topped with persimmon and pomegranate seeds, fresh gougères, or a late-season tomato tartelette.

The 2021 Riva Ranch Chardonnay walks the line, pairing perfectly with first-course dishes, sides, and lighter main entrees. The 2021 Riva Ranch Vineyard Chardonnay opens with toasty oak aromatics, complemented by baked apple aromas that lead to freshly cut pineapple, melted caramel, and toasted brioche on the palate. The balance between bright fruit flavors with hints of more rounded, buttery notes ensures this wine pairs well with sweet potato casserole with toasted pecans, roasted brussels sprouts, or butter-basted turkey with orange-zested cranberry sauce.

Around here, we all agree that our 2018 nth DEGREE Pinot Noir is, hands down, the best pairing with turkey. Overflowing with red cherry threaded with clove and black pepper spice, the savory character in roast turkey accentuates the complexity in this wine and vice versa. After almost every bite, we can attest that you’ll reach for sips of the 2019 nth DEGREE Pinot Noir. A harmonious blend of silky tannins and that long, savory finish also stand up marvelously alongside honey-baked ham or earthier dishes like wild mushroom stuffing.

Finally, don’t forget that dessert deserves a paring too! Our 2018 Orange Muscat takes your classic pumpkin pie and turns it up to eleven. With notes of honeydew and a bouquet of floral orange blossom aromatics, the wine’s bright acidity balances the rich, creaminess of the pumpkin custard and flakey crust while accentuating the subtle citrus zest in the dish that often goes unnoticed. Forget ice cream, you’ll never want pie without this Orange Muscat alongside it ever again!

Rather than spending needless time and money guessing at your Thanksgiving pairings, let Wente Vineyards do the work for you so you can make time to be fully present this year. Your family, your sanity, and your palate will thank you for it!