by MICHAEL PINKUS
Every year around this time I write a number of articles about bottles for Thanksgiving. Wines that will go with your turkey, ham, or whatever else you’ll be serving at the Thanksgiving table—but these days there seems to be a little more to be thankful for: our health, our getting together, our “getting back to normal”, and anything else that you feel thankful for after the past year-and-a-half of absolute chaos and uncertainty. The following are bottles that I am recommending sharing with friends and family around the Thanksgiving table: bottles you can be thankful for and thankful with.
Good ★★★ ½
Very Good ★★★★
Excellent ★★★★ ½
+ Wines with a little bit extra.
M Chapoutier 2019 Belleruche Rouge Cotes-Du-Rhone
$16.70, France, LCBO 17779
Nice dark fruit and floral notes hit the nose … then repeat on the palate while adding in white pepper, mocha, black cherry, blackberry and a layered finish that shows nice depth and age-ability a true beauty for under $20.
Escudo Rojo 2019 Reserva Cabernet Sauvignon
$17.95, Chile, LCBO 13434
This is a spot-on Chilean Cab in my opinion, and with that kick on the finish it takes it to another level. Mint and menthol show up and blend with a bunch of dark berries plus some smoky-vanilla notes and even some burnt/charred black cherries fresh off the grill. This one will need another five years to be smooth and silky but still a fine wine right now. Feel free to use a big glass, in fact, it’s required.
Valley of the Moon 2016 Plume, Cabernet Sauvignon
$39.95 – California – LCBO 287367
Some kick-ass Cali-Cab here with a juicy and dense dark fruit core with a hint of cherry, blackberry and plum. There’s some subtle grit, but for the most part it’s smooth and silky, and a real treat. If this was from Napa it would be double the price, but since it’s Alexander Valley… you benefit.
Chateau Mont-Redon 2019 Reserve Blanc
$17.95, France, LCBO 18602
The nose launches with floral and freshness while the palate doles out a multitude of flavours in the yellow and white fruit spectrum: apple, melon, pear, nectarine, adding in a gentle spice and a good hit of acidity. And then there’s that length to the finish that just keeps on giving back.
Villa Wolf 2017 Pinot Noir
$11.90, Germany, LCBO 291971
From the Pfalz region of Germany, not a place you think of for Pinot Noir, but they are making some great versions, so watch out for them. The concentration here is subtle but exactly what you expect from Pinot Noir: cherry, raspberry with subtle spices; it’s just a really delicious, on-point bottle of Pinot Noir.
Cantina del Garda 2020 Bardolino Chiaretto
$12.95, Italy, LCBO 20014
This wine is really pretty with bubblegum and floral aromas, while on the palate it’s light and fresh with raspberry and floral notes all balanced off with nice acidity. It’s here now and a lovely way to start your Thanksgiving get together, it’ll even be a nice match for turkey.