Dine & Drink

Thanksgiving Wine Pairings

By November 24, 2020 No Comments

While we are all at home this Thanksgiving holiday, we have some great wines that pair well with Thanksgiving meals. 

Best With Turkey – A White Bordeaux

Bordeaux is where Sauvignon Blanc originated and it’s very old. In fact, it’s older than Cabernet Sauvignon. There are two major styles of White Bordeaux: Light & Fruity or Rich & Creamy.

  • Light & Fruity: This is the most readily available style of White Bordeaux. Expect big flavors and aromas of citrus, grapefruit, lemon, gooseberry and lime along with grass, freshly-wet concrete, honey, passionfruit and honeysuckle flower.
  • Rich & Creamy: This is the most highly sought-after style of White Bordeaux. These wines tend to be predominantly Semillon which offers a much richer, more oily feeling on the tongue than Sauvignon Blanc. Expect flavors of baked apples and pears, crème brûlée, caramelized grapefruit, orange zest, ginger, figs, lemon butter and even chamomile.

Our Recommendation – Château Graville Lacoste, Bordeaux France – You can purchase with your carry-out dinner from Stafford’s Pier Restaurant. 

Dessert Wine –  Madeira
Madeira is one of the few wines that hasn’t changed since it became popular 300 years ago. Madeira is a fortified wine available in a range of dry to sweet styles. It gets its name from the island of Madeira, a small, beautiful rock in the middle of the Atlantic Ocean. Madeira’s unique taste comes from repeatedly heating the wine. The heating creates a wine with fascinating flavors of roasted nuts, stewed fruit, caramel, and toffee. During the 1600 and 1700s, wine often spoiled and needed to be fortified (by adding a little brandy) to survive the voyage at sea.

At the time, the island of Madeira was a vital provisioning point for journeys to the Americas and the East Indies and shippers would load up on Madeira wine on their way to England and the Americas. The casks of Madeira wine would be heated and cooled as the ships passed through the tropics. Shippers noticed how the wine’s flavor deepened and became better and called this sea-aging “Vinho da Roda.”

Blended Madeira: Blended Madeira is often inexpensive, and low-quality, but several higher-end examples make wonderful sipping wines; these usually carry an age designation.

  • Finest Madeira
  • Rainwater Madeira
  • Reserve
  • 20 Year Old 

Single-Varietal Madeira: Varietal Madeira represents the highest quality Madeira wine, perfect for aperitifs or dessert wines. These wines are made as both non-vintage blends and single vintage wines that can age for centuries due to Madeira’s unique winemaking process.

  • Sercial (“Ser-seal”)
  • Verdelho (“Ver-dell-oo”)
  • Boal or Bual (“Buwall”)
  • Malmsey (“Malm-see”)

Our recommendation – Justino’s 15 year old Sercial, Madeira – available for purchase with your carry-out Thanksgiving meal at Stafford’s Pier Restaurant. 






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