Editor’s Note: With so much focus on the food, and so many dishes hitting the table during the Thanksgiving feast, what to do about wine? We asked the pros at a few of our favorite wine shops – Red Hook’s Dry Dock Wine + Spirits, Williamsburg’s natural and biodynamic-focused Vine Wine, and The Natural Wine Company – for their holiday recommendations.
Dry Dock Wine + Spirits (Red Hook): Selections by Ron Kyle, owner:
Here’s a list of some special and off-the-beaten path wines we are highlighting this Thanksgiving. It includes our last rose of this year, but also some great value whites and red that pair perfectly to a Thanksgiving feast and a great local Long Island cider, too!
Anthony Nappa Napple Cider 2009 ($14)
Long Island vintage hard cider was made unpasteurized, unfiltered and unfined. Lightly sparkling due to a secondary fermentation in the bottle this cider was aged on, its lees (fermentation period) is 18 months. Refreshing when served cold with apple and bready flavors. Only 500 bottles produced.
Avanthia Mencia Rose 2010 ($22)
100% Mencia Rose (120 year Old Vines from Spain). Floral bouquet of violets and ripe red fruit with Asian spice. On the palate, flavors of Morello cherry, subtle spice and pronounced minerality, cleansing and rich, at the same time reminiscent of Pinot from the Santa Lucia Highlands.
Fabrizio Battaglino Arneis 2010 ($17)
Intense and persistent bouquet with scents of apricot and apple, and even a little camomile. The wine gives a sapid sensation and is of good structure and harmony. Goes well with appetisers, first plates based on pasta or rice, and fish dishes.
Marques de Gelida Xarel-Lo 2010 ($12)
Aged sur-lie for 5 months. It reveals a charming perfume of jasmine, mineral, melon, and baking spices. This is followed by a racy, round, intensely flavored white with some elegance and balance.
Scala Ciro Rosso Classico Superiore 2008 $20
Full red. Sexy aromas of redcurrant, strawberry and tobacco. Enters bright, but with plenty of structure…juicy acidity intensifying its red berry and tobacco flavors. There’s good flesh and sweetness over this wine’s firm spine, but the tannins becomes increasingly dry on the lingering finish.
Les Sablonnettes “Les Copines Aussi” 2010 $17
Pretty scents of black cherry pit, apple core and limestone with prominent animal and earthly tones. This is a buoyant and delightfully fruity expression of Loire Valley Gamay with zesty minerality and vibrant acidity.
Dry Dock Wine + Spirits is located 424 Van Brunt Street, at Van Dyke, in Red Hook.
The Natural Wine Company (Williamsburg): Selections by Michael Andrews, owner:
Each year, many precious brain cells are wasted on choosing the right wine for Thanksgiving. Here’s what we think: you can’t go wrong. The Thanksgiving meal, whether traditional or not, is so layered with flavors that whatever you choose will go with something on the plate.
For us, we like fruit-forward wines made from grapes like Zinfandel, Grenache, Riesling, Chenin Blanc and Gamay.
We’re drinking an Hervé Souhaut Gamay from the Rhone Valley ($27.99), a sparkling Sebastian Brunet Chenin Blanc ($23.99), an Old World Wine Company Zinfandel Field Blend from Sonoma ($25.99), and possibly our favorite all-around festive choice—a delicious, dry-ish biodynamic Lambrusco, the Ca Montanari Opera Lambrusco Secco ($15.99). It has bubbles, ripe refreshing red fruit, palate cleansing crispness and it’s just plain delicious!
The Natural Wine Company is located at 211 N. 11th Street, between Driggs and Roebling, in Williamsburg
Vine Wine (Williamsburg): Selections by Talitha Whidbee, Owner
This year for Thanksgiving I’ll be drinking these wines:
Montinore Pinot Gris – a favorite biodynamic producer from Oregon, this wine is clean and aromatic with hints of white flowers and lovely citrus. ($14.95)
Paumonak Festival Chardonnay - this local wine is perfect for Thanksgiving – American to its core, but instead of being an oak bomb it is clean, unoaked with a splash of Sauvignon Blanc to brighten it up! ($15.95)
Monasterio de Corias Seis Octavos – a natural red wine from Spain, fermented in cement tanks, it is juicy and approachable with clean minerality and tons of cranberry – it’s like tart cranberry sauce in a glass. ($14.95)
Dashe Dry Creek Zinfandel – a brilliant and delicious red full of rich strawberry and dare I say hints of coconut and spice, this wine deserves a place on every Thanksgiving table. ($24.95)
Vine Wine is located at 616 Lorimer Street, at Skillman Ave., in Williamsburg