What is the Thanksgiving wine?

Answered by Jarrod Smith

Thanksgiving wine refers to the wine that is traditionally enjoyed during the Thanksgiving holiday in the United States. It is often chosen to complement the variety of flavors found in the Thanksgiving meal, which typically consists of a roasted turkey, stuffing, cranberry sauce, and various side dishes.

When selecting a Thanksgiving wine, it is important to consider the diverse flavors and textures of the meal. Many people opt for a versatile and food-friendly wine that can pair well with multiple dishes. Zinfandel, with its bold and fruity characteristics, is a popular choice for this occasion.

Zinfandel is a red wine grape variety that has a long history in California. It was widely planted in the state before the Prohibition era, and although its popularity declined for a period of time, it has since made a comeback. Zinfandel wines can vary in style, ranging from lighter-bodied and fruit-forward to more full-bodied and rich.

One of the reasons why Zinfandel is often recommended as a Thanksgiving wine is because it can enhance the flavors of the holiday spices commonly used in dishes like stuffing and sweet potatoes. The wine’s natural notes of clove, cinnamon, and allspice can act as a complement to these flavors, creating a harmonious pairing.

Furthermore, Zinfandel’s bold fruit flavors, such as ripe blackberries, raspberries, and cherries, can provide a nice contrast to the savory and earthy flavors of roasted turkey and gravy. The wine’s moderate acidity and tannins also help to balance out the richness of the meal, preventing it from feeling too heavy on the palate.

When serving Zinfandel with Thanksgiving dinner, it is recommended to slightly chill the wine to around 55-60°F (13-15°C). This will help to bring out the wine’s fruit flavors and ensure a refreshing experience.

While Zinfandel is a popular choice, it is important to remember that wine preferences can vary among individuals. Some may prefer white wines such as Chardonnay or Riesling, while others may opt for lighter reds like Pinot Noir. Ultimately, the best Thanksgiving wine is one that you enjoy and that complements your personal taste preferences and the flavors of your specific meal.

So, whether you decide to go for a classic Zinfandel or explore other wine options, the most important thing is to choose a wine that brings joy and enhances your Thanksgiving celebration. Cheers to a wonderful holiday filled with delicious food and great company!