Eat Pie. Drink Wine. Be Thankful
I am having a hard time thinking of Thanksgiving right now – due to the crazy dump of snow we got here in YYC over the weekend. But today is officially October 1, and in Canada that means Thanksgiving is quickly upon us. Danni and I know that if this “back to school” season you were seeing kids off to high school or uni, you most likely have your Thanksgiving menu rattling around in your head. You don’t really need our help with the perfect pie recipe or a”how-to” on gravy. (Although if you need a little inspiration check out last year’s Thanksgiving fun) BUT what about wine?
Who doesn’t want to bring the perfect unique Thanksgiving wine to your host, or surprise your family with a carefully, curated bottle (or two!) We visited Kensington Wine Market for inspiration, and for some unique, creative wines that will be sure to please.
Argentina: $29.99 CAD
DURIGUTTI FAMILY WINES: PROYECTO – Las Compuertas Cordisco
Originally planted as an experimental plot within the vineyard, the first wines were made from this varietal originating from Abruzzo in Italy. The wine was fermented in concrete eggs – which I had not heard of before and therefore had me placing it in the “unique” category. A very drinkable, food friendly wine. Not too heavy, but a perfect match for your main event meal. I love the thought of bringing something no one has seen or tried to the table.
Naramata Bench BC $33.99 CAD
LOCK AND WORTH: MERLOT 2018
This small production wine is produced organically (although not certified), and well priced. You might be surprised to find a merlot on this list – particularly an Okanagan Merlot. This wine however, is light to medium in body and comes from a single vineyard. The winemaker describes this wine as: “Bright, light ruby. Sweet red plums, savoury herbs, fine tannins and refreshing acidity. Medium bodied, supple and driven.” YUM – love supporting our Canadian wine producers.
Budget Friendly Red:
Corsica, France: $25.99 CAD
DOMAINE DE TERRA VECCHIA: Niellucciu – Merlot 2017
When I asked our friends at Kensington Wine Market for a special, more budget friendly Thanksgiving wine, there was not even a hesitation that this wine was “the one.” The vines in this area of Corsica produce soft, fruity, mineral wines. I love learning about small production vineyards where their passion for winemaking and the process is at the centre of what they do. This is a softer, not typical merlot to try.
Budget Friendly White
Languedoc, France: $27.99 CAD
CHÂTEAU L’EUZIÈRE – Grains de Lune – 2017
Known to be a perfect drinking wine for poultry, fish or a vegetarian dish, this wine is a blend of Grenache Blanc, Vermentino, and Roussane (the last two grape varietals I have never heard of. Fruity, light and great value for Southern France – this wine is a solid choice for your dinner. I’m always up for a unique white that doesn’t break the bank.
IMPRESS YOUR HOST RED / WHITE (SPLURGE):
Chardonnay – Sonoma: $47.99 CAD
Pinot Noir – Sonoma: $104.99 CAD
WALTER HANSEL “The Meadows”: CHARDONNAY 2015
When I think of a Thanksgiving white, unfortunately my head goes to the sweet Rieslings my dad preferred. You see – he doesn’t really ever drink, but sometimes (Christmas, Thanksgiving, Easter) he liked to have a glass of vino with his meal. Well – his choice was always a riesling – the sweeter the better! It is now a running joke in our house that we don’t offer him wine unless we’ve got a riesling on hand.
However – if you have a slightly more sophisticated palate, or if you just want to splurge on a lovely, oaky but still considerably buttery chardonnay – this is your wine. Of course, if you are visiting my dad – a cheap riesling is all you need 😉
DUMOL “Highland Divide” : PINOT NOIR 2016
A “best Thanksgiving wine” list would not be complete without a fantastic Russian River Valley Pinot. While there is nothing unique about suggesting a pinot to accompany your turkey – this wine is special. A lovely fruit forward pinot, this wine will accompany your turkey perfectly, but drinks well on its own. If you are lucky enough to attend a Thanksgiving dinner rather than make it – bring this wine.
FOR LABEL LOVERS:
Spain: $54.99 CAD
COCA i FITÓ -NEGRE 2012 (Blend)
50% Syrah, 30% Grenache, 20% Carignan this wine is from a single vineyard in Spain. This wine opens up beautifully and is as elegant as the bottle. The chalky soil from this region makes this wine unique. Medium intensity with lots of red and dark fruit. A delicious wine from a small family owned producer.
BIG AND BOLD:
Australia: $57.99 CAD
MOSS WOOD RIBBON VALE: CABERNET SAUVIGNON 2016
This is a juicy dark berry cab different from the Napa cabernet you might be used to. Blackberry, mulberry and red currant with a light touch of oak this wine complex like a typical cab, but with an acidity that makes it drinkable. This wine is not easily found in stores so a lover of a big bold wine would likely have not sampled this beauty yet. Give it a try – particularly if your family has decided on a nice rib roast in lieu of the traditional bird.
Danni and I LOVE wine. Our wine education comes from drinking and liking – not anything official. We love trying new, unique and special wines. What better time than Thanksgiving to bring something new to the table.
Whatever wine you decide on – make sure you are enjoying with family and friends.
Thank you so much to Kensington Wine Market for taking the time to show us around your store, and for pulling out some really great choices for the big dinner.
With gratitude – CHEERS!!