Thanksgiving could be the greatest wine holiday in the world, if only because there aren’t any rules about what to drink. Or, at least in the enlightened wine drinker’s world, there aren’t any rules. Why should there be? The holiday celebrates the good fortune we enjoy in the second decade of the 21st century, and that we are able to share that good fortune with family and friends. So the wine police are not welcome.
Guidelines for holiday wine buying are here; this year ?s suggestions are after the jump:
? Alta Maria Chardonnay 2012 ($24, sample, 13.5%): Easily one of the best California chardonnays I’ve had in years. Balanced, so that the oak doesn’t overwhelm the lovely green apple fruit, which is a quality that makes it an exceptional food wine. This is how to make wine for $24 that offers value.
? Borgo Sanleo Prosecco NV ($13, purchased, 11%): Less sweet than many Proseccos, the sparkling wine of Italy, but fruity (practically tropical) and very refreshing. Not as bubbly as its Spanish, French, and California counterparts, but it’s not supposed to be.
? Charles Smith Riesling Kung Fu Girl 2012 ($11, purchased, 11%): This critical favorite from Washington state usually straddles the line between a grocery store riesling that’s just sweet and a wine that offers something more interesting. This vintage is sweet, but mostly balanced by lemon fruit and a little petrol.
? Bonny Doon Vineyard Le Cigare Volant 2007 ($32, purchased, 14.4%): Classic Randal Grahm red wine (save for the higher alcohol) — New World sensibility and Old World craftsmanship. Lots of earthy Rhone-ish aromas and deep, dark black fruit.
? Something regional from where you live, because Thanksgiving was the first local food holiday (and a tip o’ the Curmudgeon’s fedora to Richard Leahy, who always reminds me about that). It’s no coincidence that the local wine seminar at this year’s American Wine Society conference sold out. The best way to find local wine where you live? Check out your state’s winemaker’s association, just a Google search away.