Pandemic Thanksgiving Wine List 2020

This year has certainly been a stressful and unnerving time for everyone. Our dependable way of life has been thrown into chaos with no foreseeable return to normalcy anytime soon. Traditional Thanksgiving festivities will be adapted to conform to the pandemic protocols just like every other holiday or event had to do in 2020. Since our Thanksgiving dinners will hopefully be celebrated with a smaller gathering of friends and family then why shouldn’t we treat ourselves with good wine?

A Chardonnay with a touch of oak will stand up to all the flavor profiles of a family-style turkey dinner. My choice for a Chardonnay with all the right characteristics is Cakebread Cellars Chardonnay 2018. This California Chardonnay shows well in the glass with an alluring straw color and aromas of oak, apple, and vanilla. It has a good structure that supports flavors of apple, pear, melon, and, citrus that are accentuated by its medium acidity.

Often you need a red wine as a counterpoint to the white wine you are serving your guests. Saldo Zinfandel 2018 by the Prisoner Wine Company will accent your table with its beautiful ruby color and notes of oak. The flavors of dark fruit on a balanced bold body, supple tannins, and mouthwatering acidity are certain to please your red wine lovers. TIP: Decant before serving.

For me, no Thanksgiving dinner would be complete without a Riesling on the table. If you have read my blog then it is no secret that I like Finger Lakes Riesling but they can be hard to find. The two wines I have recommended are substantially above the price point I tend to cover so when I need to buy multiple bottles I have found this Washington State Riesling to be a great pick to fill that need. My go-to Washington Riesling for value and taste is Chateau Ste. Michelle Dry Riesling 2019. This Riesling is made in a very approachable style that can be enjoyed by just about anyone. It is easy to drink with crisp acidity and flavors of citrus, tropical fruit, and peach. The price point is in the $10-$14 range.

I hope you have a wonderful Thanksgiving and please stay safe.

Saldo Zinfandel 2018
Cakebread Cellars Chardonnay
Chateau Ste. Michelle Dry Riesling 2019

Uptown Funk

bridges_moscato_front__200     From Pittsburgh’s East End the Bridges Wine Company will be bringing their wines to the Pittsburgh Public Market, 2401 Penn Ave. in the Strip District for the next two weekends.  Get a taste of what Bridges Wine has to offer on Saturday March 14th & 21st from 9-5 and Sunday March 15th & 22nd from 10-4.  The newly released 2014 Washington Moscato will be available for $15 along with the Bridges 2012 Pinot Noir and 2012 Zinfandel.  James and Rebecca McCeney will also be offering special discounts on multiple bottle purchases.

Frankly Scarlet !

moscato party !

moscato party ! (Photo credit: portobeseno)

     I will use the next few posts to look at light bodied wines that I believe would be good choices for your summer outings.  I like the lighter wines for warm weather entertaining because they are easy to drink and allow you to enjoy the company of friends and family without having to worry about what wines to serve.  Beringer Red Moscato 2011 fits nicely into this category by being light with fresh fruit flavors and a floral aroma.  It is a little sweet but often described as “not too sweet or not too dry with a smooth refreshing finish”.  This deep scarlet colored Moscato is produced in Argentina from a blend of Moscato, Zinfandel and Petite Sirah grapes and bottled in the Napa Valley of California.  I don’t think you will be disappointed if you take this one with you to the park for an evening concert under the stars.

Gold Rush

Barrels of 2007 Zinfandel wine fermenting in a...

Barrels of 2007 Zinfandel wine fermenting in a wine cave in Amador County, California. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Perry Creek Zinman Zinfandel El Dorado 2007 is grown and produced in the El Dorado AVA within the Sierra Foothills region of California.  Best described as a luscious cherry and raspberry beginning with a peppery finish.  This wine is very easy to drink and is very versatile with a wide range of food from pizza and burgers to grilled steak.  Wine Enthusiast rated at 88 points makes this one you should consider for a summer gathering that includes grilling and friends.  PA L.C.B. product code 20908.