Food + Drink

WINE: What to serve this Thanksgiving

Wine suggestions from our expert, just in time for Thanksgiving.

by MICHAEL PINKUS

Thanksgiving is coming … it’s here … it’s gone. Depending on when you are reading, one of the above statements is true. But turkey day comes around again and sooner than you think, especially if you adhere to current trends. The US version is only a month-or-so away and you might celebrate that either with another turkey or by going shopping (Black Friday or Cyber Monday). Either event will require a drink, and here are six perfect pairings for just such occasions.

Villa Maria 2019 Private Bin Rosé, Hawkes Bay

New Zealand; $16.95, LCBO 14990

★★★★

This pretty rosé from the Hawkes Bay region delivers on refreshment with all its floral, raspberry and lime zest plus the addition of bitter melon, strawberry, and lemony-watermelon on the finish; perfect for a welcome glass, with an apéritif or in front of the computer while shopping. Make sure to get the current 2019, as there seems to be some ‘18 still out there.

Malivoire 2019 Lady Bug Rosé

Ontario; $16.95, LCBO 559088

★★★ ½ +

For those who are steeped in Lady Bug tradition you’ll know that this used to be a sweet rosé, but over the years winemaker, Shiraz Mottiar, has been pulling back on the sweetness, this year’s version is his driest yet. Big on raspberry, watermelon and cherry but with a subtle bitterness of citrus zest on the finish; another perfect dinner starter or online shopping companion. 

Trius 2019 Sauvignon Blanc

Ontario; $15.95, LCBO 221804

★★★ ½ +

Sauvignon Blanc is the perfect starter wine because of its high acidity, it causes the mouth to water and people to become hungry … thus amazingly cutting down on those leftovers. Outstanding aromatics kicks things off, followed by peach, grapefruit, bitter melon and honeydew. The finish lingers with lots of grapefruit pith and zest. 

Chateau Ste. Michelle 2018 Chardonnay

Washington; $19.95, LCBO 232439

★★★ ½ +

The oak seems a little more restrained on this vintage of this popular wine from Washington’s biggest producer. Soft and delicate with apple and a touch of butterscotch, there’s also some pear and peach that creeps in on the mid-palate where the creaminess seems to be balanced off with subtle acidity; will please all sorts of Chardonnay fans at the table. 

Domaine La Decelle 2017 Reserve Valreas

France; $17, LCBO 14391

★★★★ +

Fans of Rhone Valley wines will find this one over-delivers, especially for the price. It’s a 50/50 blend of Grenache and Syrah that provides an explosion of fruit on both the nose and in the mouth: spiced-plum, black cherry, blackberry and pomegranate; there’s even a hint of mineral and spicy pepper in the finish. The tannins are both silky and biting, depending on the sip. A good dinner wine for now or even in a few years. 

Frescobaldi 2016 Tenuta Pereno Chianti Classico

Italy; $24.95, LCBO 10360

★★★★

The 2016 vintage in Tuscany was “perfect” according to many winemakers, and it shows in the bottle: lots of dark fruit, violet, tobacco and mocha that ends with a little spiced-dark chocolate. You might want to open a few hours early (just to get a head start on your guests) or decant before pouring. 

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