Thanksgiving Wine Tips

Give Thanks. Drink Wine. 

When it comes to the turkey day, I reach for red wine to conquer the wide array of flavors and personalities thrown at you.

Something that lacks oak and is fruit-driven can take the blows a long holiday can bring.

The 2009 vintage was very warm in France, producing wines that highlight the fruit components in wines.  In the nooks and crannies of a great wine shop, you can dust off some delicious bottles of Beaujolais and Chinon.  While they may be foreign to most palates, they are guaranteed to unite everyone at the table.  These wines tend to be fruit-forward and free of oak.  Both are made with grapes that are a bit off the beaten path.

Beaujolais from the southern portion of Burgundy is made with Gamay.  Chinon comes from the Loire Valley just to the west of Burgundy and is made with Cabernet Franc.  They are both on the moderate to light side, and a touch of chill on the bottle will only increase there approachability.  My two favorites? Charles Joguet, Les Varennes du Grand Clos, Chinon, 2009 and Marcel Lapierre, Morgon, Beaujolais, 2009.

These wines are great to cook with (and by that I mean drink while your cooking) but also deserve a place at the table with your turkey, stuffing and all the fixin’s.

Grab a bottle of each, cause you know one bottle won’t cut it on a day when dinner starts at 4 pm.

Sabato Sagaria is food and beverage director at The Little Nell in Aspen, Colorado. He is an advanced sommelier and can be seen in the new book,  The Food Lover’s Guide to Wine by Karen Page, Andrew Dornenburg.