Understanding Wine and Food Pairing
Before plunging into the world of wine pairings, it's essential to understand some basics. The art of pairing wine with food is about enhancing the dining experience by bringing out the best flavors in both the food and the wine. The right pairing depends on the balance between the flavor profiles of the food and the wine. It's not as complex as it sounds, and with a little guidance, you'll be pairing like a pro in no time.
Choosing the Perfect Thanksgiving Wine
Thanksgiving dinner is a medley of flavors; hence, it demands wines that can stand up to this variety. The key is to pick wines that are versatile and can complement a range of flavors. Here are some suggestions for each course of the meal, from appetizers to dessert:
For the appetizers, you want to start with something to set the mood and stimulate the appetite. Our Raspberry Razzle wine is perfect for this, as it is festive, refreshing, and versatile. It can pair well with salty and cheesy appetizers, such as cheese boards, crackers, and charcuterie. It also enhances the flavors of light and seafood appetizers, such as shrimp cocktail and smoked salmon. Our Raspberry Razzle is always served chilled and is commonly consumed as an aperitif before the meal.
For the main course, you want to choose wines that can complement the turkey and the sides, without overpowering or clashing with them. You can go for either red or white wines, or both, depending on your preference and the preferences of your guests. You can also offer more than one wine, to give your guests some options and variety.
Zesty Compass red wines to try:
- Pinot Noir: This is a light-bodied and smooth red wine, with aromas and flavors of cherry, cranberry, mushroom, and earth. It is a classic turkey pairing wine because it can moisten even the driest turkey and harmonize with the savory and herbal flavors of the gravy and stuffing.
- Cabernet Sauvignon: Our medium-bodied and smooth red wine, with aromas and flavors of toasted oak, pepper and hints of baking spice and everything nice enhances the blackcurrant and dark cherry flavors. This would be the wine to pair with non-traditional entrees like beef roast or for your vegan guests to pair with the vegetarian dishes.
Zesty Compass white wines to try:
- Sauvignon Blanc: This is a light-bodied and crisp white wine, with aromas and flavors of grapefruit, lemon, grass, and herbs. It is a refreshing and versatile wine, that can pair well with the green and fresh flavors of the salad, green beans, and brussels sprouts. It will also contrast the richness of mashed potatoes and gravy.
- Traminer Riesling: This is a light-bodied and aromatic white wine, that can range from dry to sweet, with aromas and flavors of apple, peach, apricot, and honey. It is one of the most versatile white wines, that can pair well with both salty, spicy, and sweet foods. It can match the sweetness and spice of cranberry sauce, yams and sweet potato pie. It can also cut through the fat and saltiness of the turkey, gravy, stuffing, and potatoes.
For the dessert, you want to choose wines that can match or contrast the sweetness and spice of the pumpkin pie, apple pie, pecan pie, or whatever dessert you are serving. You can opt for either sweet or dry wines, or both, depending on your preference and the preferences of your guests. You can also offer some beer, coffee, or tea, to cleanse the palate and refresh the senses.
Zesty Compass sweet wine pairing:
- North Star Ice Wine: This is our sweet and concentrated wine, made from grapes that are frozen on the vine, and then pressed while still frozen. It has aromas and flavors of peach, pear, honey, and citrus. It is a delicate wine that pairs perfectly with fresh flavors of fruit and can contrast the richness of pumpkin or sweet potato pie.
Zesty Compass dry wine pairing:
- Cabernet Sauvignon: This is our medium-bodied and tannic red wine, with aromas and flavors of blackcurrant, plum, cedar, and tobacco. It is a bold and complex wine that can pair well with dark and bitter flavors of chocolate cake and can contrast the sweetness of pumpkin or sweet potato pie.
Remember, the best wine is the one that you enjoy! While these suggestions can guide you, everyone's palate is different & unique, and the best pairing is the one that makes your meal more enjoyable. So, this Thanksgiving, explore different wines, discover new favorites, and most importantly, enjoy the company of loved ones. After all, Thanksgiving is not just about the food and wine; it's about gratitude, togetherness, and creating lasting memories.
So, let's raise a glass and say cheers to the perfect Zesty Compass Collection wine pairing and a beautiful Thanksgiving feast!