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2023 Thanksgiving Wine Picks

La Colombera Bricco Bartolomeo Cortese *November Staff 6

                                    100% Cortese grape from Piedmont, Italy.  This is a zippy and refreshing white with kiwi, dried apricot and yellow rose on the nose.  The acidity is what shines in this wine, with a laser beam of lemon and honeysuckle flavors flying around it.  This is a wonderful palate cleanser and thirst quencher from a grape and place you may not expect, but elating to have tried.

Hansen-Lauer Sekt Brut *November Staff 6

Bone-dry sparkling Riesling from Mosel Germany.  Apple, candied ginger, white rose, and tropical fruit permeate every inch of this sleek sparkler.  Of the Thanksgiving weapons in your arsenal, this is the lightsaber; electric, bright, and will cut through anything perfectly.

Viejo Feo Reserva Pinot Noir *November Staff 6  

This playful little Pinot from Central Valley Chile, punches miles above its weight.  Savory umami flavors line a soft cascade of cherry and cranberry.  Acidity on the palate creates levity without drying tartness, keeping this PN silky and easy.  The requisite non-existent tannin and approachability makes this quite the sleeper in your Pinot repertoire.

Vento Di Mare Nerello Mascalese *November Staff 6

100% Mascalese high-elevation Western Sicily.  Fresh red berries and sour cherry start the show with flavors of root spice and savory green arriving on a zippy palate with low tannin.  For those who like lighter bodied reds, this may become your new wine crush.

Albero Castilla Natural Solo Red *November Staff 6

Tempranillo and Bobal blend from Castilla, Spain.  A wide spectrum of black to red berries are the core here, surrounded by wisps of subtle pink peppercorn spice and incredible earth awaited by its coating texture and polished tannin.  A natural and fresh expression of the grapes that lets the growing do the talking.

Hin Areni Vineyards Areni Reserve Red *November Staff 6    

Areni Noir grape from Armenia.  Sweet cherry and pomegranite flavors and herbaceous whispers lure you in, with a palate of soaring acidity and low tannin.  The oak is what shines here, with sweet baking spices playing perfectly with the rest of the profile, like a sensual Pinot Noir that put on an Autumnal sweater.

Stift Kloster Neuburg Gruner Veltliner Sekt Brut

This Austrian charmat method Gruner has soft present bubbles that kick up gorgeous aromas of green fruit, soft green herbs, and white pepper, with faint grazes of brioche toast.  Lively acidity with a rounded mouthfeel and creamy finish, make this an endlessly approachable and delectably unique take on the bright white we all know and love.

Banyan Monterey Gewurztraminer

A subtle and sexy take on dry Gewurz from Monterey, California.  Kumquat, orange and pear blossom, and the iconic lychee sneak out of the glass on the nose, and ride a wave of mouth-watering acidity and linear minerality, all without being too in-your-face the way many Gewurztraminer can be.   Any salad or lightly seasoned dish that needs an aromatic touch would have a perfect first date with this wine.

Prosper Maufoux Bourgogne Chardonnay

This Subtle Burgundian Chard sports lemon curd and Baby's Breath white flower, that evolves into a lovely dance between soft vanilla and mineral laced acidity on the palate.  This wine is set to manifest a plate of roasted poultry and resinous herbs before your very eyes.

Trouillet Lebeau Macon Solutré Pouilly

This is a true love letter to people who 'don't do Chardonnay'. The aromas of fresh and candied citrus combine with a lively and playful fountain of acidity on the palate, along with a symbiosis between subtle minerality and lemon curd on the finish. This is White Burgundy you rarely see outside of the financial stratosphere. Deliciously paired with roasted poultry and winter vegetables, but even more delicious to give to a Chardonnay skeptic.

Red Tail Ridge Good Karma Riesling

This winery from the Finger Lakes gives portions of profit to a local food bank in your area, and the wine itself is just as generous.  Key lime, peaches, and honeysuckle on the nose invite you through the door, with melon and tangerine on the palate set highly ablaze by strong acidity and the tiniest brush stroke of sweetness.  And yes, a true game-changer with a Big-Ass-Bird.

Caparzo Sangiovese Toscana

100% Sangiovese from Tuscany.  Bright red/black cherry and soft herbal licorice flavors follow you from start to finish, with subtle spice and blackberry skipping on the palate.  Super easy, low tannin, and medium body, welcome to your new all-access pass for anything with Italian tomato sauce.  And I do mean ANY dish with tomato sauce.

Field Recordings Regenerator Zinfandel

This is a classic expression of OG Zinfandel.  Big, fruity, and spicy, while still showing some subtlety and poised restraint.  Bright red berry and red plum comes out of every opening in this wine, with less boisterous suggestions of anise and pepper spice, with an acidic backbone that takes this profile of zin to the top floor.  This would play nice with all the red meat at your dinner table and is a crowd-pleaser to say the least.

Terres Dorees L'Ancien Beaujolais

100% Gamay from Charnay, Beaujolais, France, this red is the unofficial mascot of the month of November.  Bright, child-like strawberry and blueberry carry a beautiful dry profile of medium structure and body, low tannin.  The duality between prominent stony minerality and the softness of this wine makes it classically Beaujolais.  Should be had not only with all things Thanksgiving, but all things period.

Domaine du Tix Bramefan Cuvee Rouge

92% Syrah and 8% Grenache Cuvee from Eastern Rhone, France.  Ever put on a warm shirt on right out of the dryer?  Combine that feeling with lush cherry, soft stone, and vanilla laced woodspice, and you have a red fitting to any scenario that might involve a cold day.  Delicious.

Vinicola Corellana Vina Zorzal Garnacha

100% Garnacha from Navarra, Spain.  Clean, high-intensity aromas of red fruit such as raspberry, strawberry, red cherry, also black pepper and earthy notes.  Precise, elegant, and nuanced, this juicy Spanish red shows a youthful and pure expression of this grape.  Definitely can be indulged on its own, but sausage stuffing would bring you much happiness, too.

Domaine de Cristia Cotes du Rhone

A ripe and opulent Rhone made from 100% Grenache.   A sweeping tide of raspberry, black cherry, soft spice and sunbaked warm earth will wash over you and take you away to sunny Southern France.  Rich and concentrated without abrasive or bitter tannin monopolizing the profile.  A delightful Autumnal Rhone that drinks well out of its league.

Ty Caton Entycement Red Wine

Balanced and blissful Sonoma red blend of 44% Cabernet, 41% Syrah, and 15% Petit Verdot.  Plush and flirtatious hits of blackberry, boysenberry, and silky chocolate build this profile brick by brick, with a satiating thickness and smooth structure on the palate.  A garnish of wood spice on the finish brings it all to a new level of complexity and balance.   Change your mind about Cali Blends!