The holidays are upon us and that means home entertaining and those long-anticipated dinner extravaganzas with family and friends.

I’m always looking for the great wines at a great price that go well with the array of holiday cuisine.  Wines that will leave your guests impressed with your thoughtfulness and send them to the wine store to replicate your entertaining style.  Wine is such an individual and subjective topic and there really isn’t one wine that goes great with a Thanksgiving spread.

The typical Thanksgiving dinner is a cacophony of color, flavor, texture, and sweetness. This rainbow of flavors can be a challenge to pair with the “perfect” wine. Who needs just one wine on the Turkey table anyway? Here is my Turkey day wine plan and it is, of course, flexible and can be adjusted to meet your personal likes or dislikes.

While the finishing touches are taking place, I like to open a couple of sparkling wines to get the party started. Dry bubbles or even an Extra Dry with a hint of sweetness can actually be that one wine that can work throughout the meal, but what fun is that?

At the festive dinner table is where I like to serve an array of wine. From light and off-dry to big, rich and bold, there is bound to be a wine to please everyone’s individual taste preference.

The typical lineup will include a couple of aromatic whites like Viognier, Riesling, Chenin Blanc or maybe even a semi-dry Moscato. These wines can pair well with sweet potatoes, glazed carrots, and white meat turkey.

For me, white meat turkey calls for a BIG Chardonnay with a good balance of oak, fruit, and acidity. For the dark meat lovers or guests who like red wine, I usually have a Pinot Noir or a lighter-bodied Grenache or Zinfandel.

For me, white meat turkey calls for a BIG Chardonnay with a good balance of oak, fruit, and acidity. For the dark meat lovers or guests who like red wine, I usually have a Pinot Noir or a lighter-bodied Grenache or Zinfandel. The wine lineup wouldn’t be complete without a big bold red in the decanter. Cabernet is king, but for me, a blended red with bright red fruit flavors hits the spot…think Bordeaux or a Meritage blend from California.

As the pumpkin and pecan pie is being cut I’m usually ready for Late Bottle Vintage (LBV) Porto or a thick, rich late harvest sweet wine. Or maybe it’s just time for a couch, football on the tube and a nap.

As always, be creative and open-minded when it comes to wine and most importantly drink what you like. As elementary as it sounds, White Zin goes with everything.

May you have much to be thankful for this time of year!

Guy Bower
The Good Life Guy

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