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Rosie

Thanksgiving Day Wines

133 posts in this topic

We went to a friend's house for an old-timey family-style dinner, so everything (except for some hummus to start and several desserts to finish) was served at the same time.

Ms. Alex sometimes will get a migraine headache from red wine, so she drank the better part of a 2000 Callaway Coastal Reserve Viognier. I did the same to a 1999 Fritz Winery Old Vines Zinfandel. I love this wine -- great Zinfandel character without having to be in your face about it.

Someone brought a lovely Washington state dessert wine that I unfortunately did not record. :sad:


Gene Weingarten, writing in the Washington Post about online news stories and their readers' comments: "I basically like 'comments,' though they can seem a little jarring: spit-flecked rants that are appended to a product that at least tries for a measure of objectivity and dignity. It's as though when you order a sirloin steak, it comes with a side of maggots."

 

"A vasectomy might cost as much as a year’s worth of ice cream, but that doesn’t mean it’s equally enjoyable." -Ezra Dyer, NY Times

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We only opened two wines, a 2001 Wegeler Bernkasteler Doctor Riesling Spatlese, and a 1998 Turley Grist Vineyard Zinfandel. Both went great with a traditional roast turkey dinner with all the trimmings.

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Venado, Welcome to eGullet!


John Sconzo, M.D. aka "docsconz"

"Remember that a very good sardine is always preferable to a not that good lobster."

- Ferran Adria on eGullet 12/16/2004.

Docsconz - Musings on Food and Life

Slow Food Saratoga Region - Co-Founder

Twitter - @docsconz

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Now I ask, what did you serve or drink on Thanksgiving?

Throughout Thanksgiving Day, we dined on crackers and cheese, roasted chicken and root vegetables, mashed butternut squash, pan gravy, a green salad and warm cranberry muffins with yogurt cheese. We also had sips of these:

1999 Coudert, Clos de la Roilette Fleurie Cuvee Tardive:

Although the floral/face powder element (Fleurie?) of the nose and palate is evident, this wine is now showing its structure with some dusty tannins to go with very dense fruit. Still crunchy acidity, over the years since release the wine seems to have picked-up weight and density. It is not as smooth as it once was but I suspect that is only because this is closing down.

I can’t recall another Beaujolais that is either this concentrated or this structured, not even more current vintages of this wine. And it accomplishes both with grace.

My guess is that this will live for (and develop over) a very long time.

About $22 at release, delivered.

2000 Domaine de la Petite Cassagne, Costieres de Nimes:

As balanced and harmonious a southern Rhone as one could wish; completely smooth and integrated with good complexity, a touch Mourvedre funk and nothing out of place. Keeps the Grenache elements in the background, which is where I like them. Pure, rich and goes down easy. Really an exceptional bargain at less than $10 retail.

1999 Gilles Robin, Crozes-Hermitage Cuvee Alberic Bouvet:

Not its best showing (it seems to be closing up), but still characteristically northern Rhone with strong raspberry fruit concentrate and smoked bacon flavors and smells. More a one-note song today than its usual chorus of smells and flavors; even so, better than most of the syrah in my cellar.

Despite having more of this than any other wine in my cellar, this is the wine in my cellar I would most like to have more of, regardless of price. This is authentic.

About $10, delivered.

Best, Jim


www.CowanCellars.com

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We started with Paul Bara Brut Rose NV. Then had both 2001 Thanisch Goldkap Kabinet Riesling and 1997 Quintessa with our food. 1996 Phelps Eisrebe with dessert.

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As mentioned in this discussion of our dinner at Amuse, we had a Schneider Cabernet Franc, 2000, from the North Fork of Long Island. It was GOOD, went well with almost everything, and was enjoyed even by a non-drinker. (That might not be a positive to some here, but in this case, to me it is.)

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I brought Eitelsbacher Karhauserhofberg Riesling Kabinett Halbtrocken 2001. Everyone was stunned by beautiful dry German riesling. For dessert:

Vin de Paille d'Arbois, Domaine Rolet 1999.


Mark

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For the main event, we had Madiera-braised turkey with fried sage stuffing. But some of our guests eat fish but not poultry or red meat, so I grilled a nice side of salmon which a teriyaki-ish marinade (soya, sherry, ginger, & garlic). There was also another pan of stuffing/dressing with shiitakes, leeks with chestnuts, green beans, mashed potates, sweet potatoes, and more. As you can guess, no one wine would match with everything.

Wines included:

2001 Kurt Darting Dürkheimer Hochbenn (Pfalz) Riesling Kabinett was floral, sweet, and a bit softer than most 2001 kabs. But very tasty with loads of pit fruit flavors. This was supposed to be a segue into a Christoffel kab, but as we never finished this one (light drinking crowd) it was the last Riesling of the night.

The salmon gave me an excuse to open a Pinot Noir, the 1994 Michel Lafarge "Clos des Chateau des Ducs" Volnay 1er Cru. Spice and cherry nose, nice medium-bodied wine with rich red fruit, good acidity, and a very long spicy finish. Very good wine from a crappy vintage.

I put out an array of reds and gave the only guest who cared re wine the options of a Rhone, a Zinfandel, or a mature Bordeaux, he chose the 1982 Ch. Potensac (Médoc). Actually showed as reasonably young- good red fruit. But while smooth and pleasant, lacking in secondary aromas and flavors. Other bottles of this recently were better.

While the pumpkin and sweet-potato/pecan pies were being sliced, passed a variety of cheeses. As there were several blues (St. Agur, Montbriac, and Stilton), it seemed a good time to try the 1982 Martinez Vintage Porto. Immediately after decanting I was concerned about high levels of VA, but it seemed to blow off. Cinnamon-spicy with some chocolate notes in the fruit, seemingly fully resolved tannins. Not at all hot, actually seemingly a little light for VP, but very pleasant.

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It seems that German rieslings are pretty common on this listing. Have they always been favorites for Thanksgiving or is that a relatively recent phenomenon for most of you? This is the first year I had it with my turkey, but it won't be the last.


John Sconzo, M.D. aka "docsconz"

"Remember that a very good sardine is always preferable to a not that good lobster."

- Ferran Adria on eGullet 12/16/2004.

Docsconz - Musings on Food and Life

Slow Food Saratoga Region - Co-Founder

Twitter - @docsconz

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Along with the usual brined roast turkey, dressing, sweet potatoes, green beans, rice, gravy, peas, scalloped oysters, & pearl onions.

1990 Grand Dame

1990 Von Simmern Erbacher Marcobrun Reisling Spatlese

1996 Hospice de Beaune Corton Cuvee Charlotte Dumay (mags)

1970 Grahams Port

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It seems that German rieslings are pretty common on this listing. Have they always been favorites for Thanksgiving or is that a relatively recent phenomenon for most of you? This is the first year I had it with my turkey, but it won't be the last.

John,

Only very smart people choose German rieslings. Must be a lot of smart people here. :cool:


Mark

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Only very smart people choose German rieslings. Must be a lot of smart people here.  :cool:

Mark, I had a few glasses before I went to dinner. Does that qualify?


Firefly Restaurant

Washington, DC

Not the body of a man from earth, not the face of the one you love

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Highlight was 95' Beaucastel CDP.

I opened 3 of my last 4 bottles and I think the time was right.

-practically no tannins left

-super smooth

-dark concentrated spicy fruit

How long should I hold my last bottle? I doubt it will get any better and may be going down hill. The last one I opened was in 2001 and it too was great. At that time I remember thinking that I shouldn't hold the others any longer.

What to do, drink or hold?

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We started with

1. Gloria Ferrrer Sonoma Brut

alongside the appetizers of shrimp paste, oysters, cheese straws and roasted nuts.

2. Shug 2001 Sonoma County Sauvignon Blanc

with the creamless wild mushroom soup garnished w/parsley, croutons & creme fraiche.

3. David Bruce 2001 Santa Cruz Mountain Pinot Noir

&

4. Tokara Estate 2001 Yarra Valley Shiraz

w/the turkey, etc.

5. Alderbrook 1995 Sonoma Valley, Kunde Vineyard, Late Harvest Muscat de Frontignan

before the pies.

I've had and enjoyed David Bruce Pinot Noir (esp. Santa Cruz Mountains) many times and this again did not disappoint.

The two stars of the day were the Tokar Estate Shiraz and the Alderbrook dessert wine.

A friend (who was also at dinner) brought the Shiraz back from a trip down under this past year. I have never tasted anything quite like it! The shiraz had this wonderful toasty, almost smoky edge to it. Held up really well w/the turkey.

The Alderbrook Late Harvest Muscat was also wonderful--undertones of syrupy grapefruit and backbone w/enough acidity.

***By the way, has anyone else tasted wines from Tokar Estate or know anything more about this vineyard? Thanks.


Edited by ludja (log)

"Under the dusty almond trees, ... stalls were set up which sold banana liquor, rolls, blood puddings, chopped fried meat, meat pies, sausage, yucca breads, crullers, buns, corn breads, puff pastes, longanizas, tripes, coconut nougats, rum toddies, along with all sorts of trifles, gewgaws, trinkets, and knickknacks, and cockfights and lottery tickets."

-- Gabriel Garcia Marquez, 1962 "Big Mama's Funeral"

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Adding to the body count:

NV Thierry Troccon Vin de Bugey Cerdon "Clos de la Bierle" - Pleasant if simple pink bubbly redolent of cranberries and pomegranate. The family liked it, so into the regular list it goes.

2001 Bruno Hunold Vin d'Alsace pinot gris - Ehh. Nice enough, and true-to-type with apple and citrus notes playing off the tell-tale honeyed finish. I need to try some of Hunold's cru wines to get a better fix on the house.


Kriss Reed

Long Beach, CA

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Had friends for thanksgiving dinner last evening:

Blue Mountain Brut (NV) – simple nose, good fizz, citric finish, equivalent to a decent Cava.

2003 De Wetshof Estate Lesca Chardonnay (S. Africa) – abundant fruit in nose, full and slightly sweet in the mouth, nice wine and recently on sale here.

With squash soup.

2002 Morgante Nero d’Avola (Sicily) – ripe hot nose with boysenberry and nutmeg, the wine slightly coarse but quite tasty nonetheless. For those days when you feel like a bit of rough trade….

With pasta with sage-butter sauce.

1989 Borgogno Barolo Riserva – some browning/fading at edges, mature nose without to much tar, still surprisingly tannic, ending well – juicy, and with some fruit that only appeared 4 hours after decanting.

With roast goose with baked pears and apple stuffing

1998 Brolo di Campofiorin – a selected batch of the regulat ripasso, actually lighter and drier than the Morgante had been, but decent cheese match. The typical ripasso nose, readily identifiable, was not heavy and the wine matched the cheese quite well.

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We just had 1996 Clos Windsbuhl Zind Humbrect Pinot Gris with goose.

Heaven.

"The goose is a silly bird; too much for one, and not enough for two"


Edited by jackal10 (log)

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Had friends for thanksgiving dinner last evening...

Bills, Hello...

You just taught me an important lesson for which I thank you. When I first saw your post I wondered just why someone was posting about this "American" holiday in October and not November. It took a minute....I checked and saw that you live in Canada, I did a bit of google research and discovered that Canada celebrates Thanksgiving on the second Monday of October. The thanks...for making me hyper-aware that I, like many who have lived in the United States of America for any length of time can be terribly ignorant of things specifically cultural to Canada. I will start doing some serious reading/thinking about those differences.

Thanks as well for sharing what sounds like a lovely evening

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daniel

the holiday here is nowhere near as big as in the US. it doesn't have the same historical background and veritas as in the us


Edited by Vinfidel (log)

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how do you have a hot nose?

love that nero d'avola, had it at otto. delicious. excellent grape.

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how do you have a hot nose?

My guess is that Bill is using the word "hot" to mean "alcoholic." If I'm wrong, he'll say so. I've often tasted wines that have shown more alcohol on the nose than anything else.


We cannot employ the mind to advantage when we are filled with excessive food and drink - Cicero

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daniel

the holiday here is nowhere near as big as in the US. it doesn't have the same historical background and veritas as in the us

Speak for yourself. :biggrin:

And Thanksgiving Greetings from Kelowna, British Columbia (in the heart of the Okanagan Wine Country) . . .

Canadian Thanksgiving traditionally celebrates the end of harvest, the changeover from short pants to corduroy trousers, the brining of turkeys in driveway salt, and the beginning of the hockey season.

Canadian men have been exhausted for the past year as we've been suffering through the season-long National Hockey League strike. We're exhausted because this has meant endless home renovations and a lot of extra sex. But now we're returning to time-honoured rituals such as making love in the style of the hound so that both parties can enjoy the nightly hockey highlights reel.

We've been celebrating Thanksgiving for the past three days and nights as the harvest has been going on around us: the last of the tomatoes and the Bosc and Bartlety pears; Delicious, Spartan and McIntosh apples; and, of course, the wine grapes. It's going to be a solid, if not spectacular vintage, characterized by a warm August followed by big temperature spikes in late September: from 1˚C overnight to 25˚C (about 34˚ to 77˚ F) at 3pm.

The big reds are being hauled in from the Oliver benches, about an hour south, where the hand of the Sonora Desert reaches over the Canada/US border. We live in white wine and pinot noir country, high above the lake where the breezes keep the temperature a little lower in the summer.

Thanksgiving is a half-week festival--nay, orgy--of meats and local produce.

We certainly sampled many local bottles. The best local turkey accompaniment was the Mission Hill 03 Five Vineyards Dry Reisling (CDN $15.99--it won a gold medal at this year's Los Angeles County Fair wine competition) and the plush CedarCreek Platinum Reserve pinot noir (CDN $35.09).

Our long weekend began with a turkey dinner with the usual accessories (Brussels sprouts, peas, cranberry sauce, roasted carrots, sausage stuffing, whipped potatoes and a hearty gravy) on Friday night in Vancouver.

On Saturday, we came up to the wine country, about a 35-minute drive in a WestJet 737. Some German- and Ukranian-Canadian friends entertained us with a crab 'Nicoise' salad with a Louis-styled dressing, a lightly smoked ham, fabulous perogies and Ukranian sausages, squash and scalloped potatoes.

Last night was the big family and friends sitdown for 14: Oyama saucisson and beer in the garden, then, compliments of one of our guests, chef Murray Bancroft, a starter of Kobe beef slices over baby arugula in a simple lemon and olive oil vinaigrette.

At table: two turkeys, mashed potatoes, sprouts in sweet vinaigrette with walnuts, squash casserole, roasted carrots, etc.

The Kobe beef was sliced thinly and briefly seared--it had the near-texture and unctuous flavour of foie gras. Aunty Prim's Brussels sprouts (she lives there) were steamed and then finished in a maple syrup-raised vinaigrette. The local walnuts were added for crunch. They performed admirably.

All three dinners finished with pumpkin pie with whipped cream.

Of the many wines we sampled, it was one local and two long distance bottles that stood out. Last night's selections were the best: we started with Blue Mountain NV Brut bubbly.

Then spectacular bottles of 04 Loimer Reisling Langenlois (Austria) 12.0%/vol (CDN $24.90) that really shook hands with the bird--very elegant structure, minerally but supple.

With the non-cheese course after dessert (several guests were in distress by this point), we opened a bottle of 03 Spinifex Esprit from the Barossa (CDN $35.90). It's 40% granache, 34% mataro, 21% shiraz and 5% cinsault. Unfiltered and 15.0%/vol there were only 256 cases produced by Domain Jardin in Nuriootpa, SA. A delightfully complex bruiser from old, low-yielding vines.

Today is all about turkey sandwiches on Irish soda bread with mayonnaise, cranberries, salt and pepper. That's it. The fire is on, the recycling box is full, the hockey game comes later. We're going to open a bottle of 95 Gewurtztraminer Grand Cru Mambourg from Alsace and turn out the lights.

This is life--and the giving of thanks for all its abundance--as we know it here.

Cheers,

Jamie


Edited by jamiemaw (log)

from the thinly veneered desk of:

Jamie Maw

Food Editor

Vancouver magazine

www.vancouvermagazine.com

Foodblog: In the Belly of the Feast - Eating BC

"Profumo profondo della mia carne"

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Last night I made this dinner, and with it I opened a bottle left behind at my house by some kind eG member at some past event. I wish I knew who it was so I could thank them, because it's really a nice bottle.

It was the Syncline Alder Ridge Columbia Valley Roussanne 2003, and it was really perfect with this meal. Somehow it was round enough and had the perfect acidity for a dinner that was full of herbal flavors and lots of fat. Because this dinner had a lot in common with a Thanksgiving meal, I'm wondering whether this might be the perfect T-Day white, especially since it's about $20, which is good for a group event. Any opinions?

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Roussanne is an interesting varietal, generally heavier and with an oilier mouthfeel than chardonnay, and with some of the expressive, exotic fruit of a viognier but not the viognier green edge finish.

We had a roussanne with dinner last night--grilled prawn and scallop kabobs in Tequila-lime marinade, with a huge, translucent halibut filet and asparagus, also grilled. The halibut had a little lime, Tequila, and soy and herb marinade. Tiny baked new potatoes with herb butter, and a sour cream, mayo, cayenne dipping sauce for everything.

Proud mama disclosure: all prepared by my 22-year-old son for his new grill-friend Sarah. She's a former employee, beautiful girl with a sweet voice and everybody loves her. I can't believe it! :wub:

Oops, almost forgot. Dinner was seafood because the anchor of the evening was Colin's made-from-scratch super creamy not-too-sweet cheesecake, no sinking, no cracks, with a fresh, tart raspberry cream topping. Served with zinfandel portesque by candlelight.

What was the question?


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Solid Communications

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Whatever wine you want to serve is the right wine. Generally, though, you want a wine with plenty of acidity -- the usual suspects end up being Riesling, Beaujolais, Pinot Noir, and Champage. Some people also like to serve Zinfandel since it is (or at one time was) "American."

The thing with Thanksgiving dinner is that there are usually so many flavors and such going on, that it's good to have a variety of wines and let your guests pick for themselves.


We cannot employ the mind to advantage when we are filled with excessive food and drink - Cicero

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