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Nov 22, 2022

Happy Thanksgiving/Harvest Meal 2022. For this episode, we’re discussing wines that will give you great bang for your buck, pair perfectly with the meal, and impress your guests.

Photo: Pumpkins & Pais!
(c) Wine For Normal People

These pairings are really for any traditional western meal – Thanksgiving, Christmas, or any sort of food that celebrates autumn flavors. 


Here’s the list for 2022...

The Welcome Wine

  • Sparkling options: Sekt from Germany (Riesling is best), South African Cap Classique, Lambrusco
  • Sherry: Our favorite type of Sherry is Amontillado. It’s great with nuts and generally well liked by people when they try it. Good producers: Hidalgo la Gitana, Valdespino, Lustau, Osbourne, and Bodegas Dios Baco are some great producers.

Dry white wines

  • OR More acidic whites -- better with acidic food with a lot of citrus/acidity or for contrast:
    • Vernaccia di San Gimignano (Tuscany)
    • Australian Riesling from the Clare and Eden Valleys
    • Finger Lakes Riesling

Off Dry Whites for dishes with fruit or with sweetness (yams, corn):

  • Mosel Riesling from Germany
  • Off-dry Finger Lakes Riesling
  • Vouvray from the Loire Valley, France


Light Reds and rosé (good with turkey, ham, pork):

Heavier reds (for non-turkey meals):

  • Bordeaux – general Bordeaux or Bordeaux Superieur for MVP, Right Bank (St. Emilion, Fronsac) and Côtes de Bordeaux for meats or heavier vegetables with more delicate, herbal flavors, Médoc for more robust meats with more charred notes
  • Primitivo for robust meats
  • Chilean Cabernet Sauvignon or Carménere for heavily flavored, braised, charred meat



  • Ruby Port for chocolate desserts
  • Muscat-based wines – Muscat de Beaumes de Venise, Muscat de Rivesaltes for fruit or custard desserts
  • Bring back the off-dry Sekt or Lambrusco from the beginning of the meal to enjoy at the end of the meal. Lambrusco is good with berry or cherry desserts, Sekt with apple and custards



  • Don’t buy too much wine.
  • If you have a limited number of drinkers, limit the choices for the meal. If you plan to serve dessert wine, don’t go overboard with options at the beginning of the meal or you’ll have no takers.
  • If your meal has a theme – it’s very savory or is very vegetable focused, stick to the wine that will best suit those dishes and don’t offer too many choices


Check out the Wine For Normal People book for more tips on pairing! 


Have a safe, happy, healthy holiday. We are so grateful to you for listening and for your continued support!!



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