Beyond the food: Which wines pair best with Thanksgiving?

Thanksgiving dinner. (Photo by Monstera from Pexels.)

With Thanksgiving just around the corner, you’ve likely either made a detailed grocery list, or you’ve thought a lot about what you will serve at the table.

It is the biggest holiday of the year, for some, and it takes some serious preparation.

When it comes to the drinks you will serve guests, wine feels like a natural offering. It lends itself to accentuate the flavors of the food. What better time than Thanksgiving to do that?

Maybe you’re not familiar with wines, or maybe you are, and you’re still not sure what might be best to serve.

No need to sweat this decision, because we will tell you which glass you’ll want to pour on Turkey Day.


If you’re planning to have anything like a charcuterie board, or perhaps some cheese and finger foods, a sparkling wine is a great way to go.

Here’s the thing (we’ll give you this nugget early): Sparkling wines are wonderful to sip throughout a meal, too, because they pair so well with most dishes on the table.

The main event

We’ll start by saying this: In light of knowing that most people who drink wine have a preference -- red or white -- we have some recommendations for every palate.

Because turkey has a low fat content, it can be dry if not cooked carefully. Because of that, the wine you serve, ideally, would be a full-bodied white wine or a medium-bodied red, according to Decanter.

Those would be the ideal offerings, but the following will all do the trick.


Finally, the best part of the day: Dessert.

You might be surprised to hear that the wine you drink with dessert should actually be even sweeter than the dessert you are eating.

The best recommendation for after-dinner sweets is a port wine.

Ruby ports are great with chocolate, while a tawny port is great with something like pumpkin pie, and a pink port pairs well with apple or other fruit pies.

What will you be sipping on during Thanksgiving? Do you have any specific recommendations? We’d love to hear in the comment section below.

About the Author:

Dawn Jorgenson, Graham Media Group Branded Content Managing Editor, began working with the group in April 2013. She graduated from Texas State University with a degree in electronic media.