Cooking for a crowd can be stressful. We put together an easy guide to help take the stress out of food-wine pairing (and choosing the right wine glass) for your Thanksgiving Dinner.

27% of Americans claim Thanksgiving is their favorite holiday of the year and another 41% say it is their 2nd favorite.  And why not?  The gathering of family and friends, the roaring fire, the amazing smells coming from the kitchen, the beautifully set table (with Eisch crystal, of course!) and an array of perfectly matched food and wine pairings.  What’s not to love?

The traditional Thanksgiving meal offers so many different flavors, both savory and sweet.  So, what’s the best wine to serve?  The easy answer is, whatever you like.  There really isn’t a right or wrong here. However, if you want to follow the so-called rules, you will find a few tips below.

Do keep in mind, even though this is a great time to splurge, you do not have to break the bank in order to serve a quality wine.  This time of year, there are plenty of excellent wines for around $10.  As always, I recommend getting to know the personnel at your local wine shop.  It is their job to be informed and help steer you in the right direction based on your preferences.  Many of these shops have a newsletter or a website that will outline wines of the season and feature special buys.

4 Easy Wine Pairing Tips

1. If medium-bodied reds are your preference, a Pinot Noir is an excellent choice.  The medium to high-acidity of this fruit-forward wine, pairs nicely with turkey and all the salty, savory flavors of the side dishes.  Burgundy, with the same fruit- forward qualities and added mineral overtones, is made from the same grapes. So, for all the same reasons, it is another good choice for this feast.   A perfect wine glass for serving these wines would be our “Sky” SensisPlus Burgundy.  It is a showstopper on the table! The added benefit of SensisPlus will help release all the best qualities these wines have to offer.

2. Maybe you prefer bolder reds?  If that is the case, Syrah or Zinfandel are perfect choices.  Both are considered jammier wines, with the Syrah having more earthy qualities than the Zin.  The “Superior” SensisPlus Bold Red Wine glass, with its taller bowl and smaller opening, will concentrate all those fruits, spices and earth tones right to the nose and palate.

3. Chardonnay is a very popular white wine and would be a fine choice.  However, why not branch out and choose a lighter-bodied white wine to better contrast the heavier, savory nature of the meal? If that appeals to you, search no further than the Riesling or Gewürztraminer aisle. The light fruits and spice overtones with light minerality are a great compliment.  A dry or sweeter Riesling will also work. But, why not save the sweeter wine for dessert?  Sauvignon Blanc is another excellent choice. This varietal has a bit more floral and citrus overtones and less mineral and spice taste than the Riesling.  Our go-to glass to help step up the characteristics of these wines, is our traditional “Vinezza” SensisPlus White Wine glass.

4. Lastly, don’t forget about sparkling wine.  Their typical acidity offers incredible versatility in food-pairing possibilities.  And let’s face it, sparkling wines always suggest it’s a festive occasion. Not to mention, a graceful champagne flute makes a beautifully set table even more elegant.  Sparkling wines, which include Champagne, Cremant, Prosecco, Cava and Sect, pair well with most appetizers. They are also a sumptuous match with turkey and stuffing. After a heavy meal, their light bubbles marry perfectly with rich desserts.  For this wonderful celebration, we reach for the “Sky” SensisPlus Champagne Flute.

From all of us at Eisch, we wish you a safe and happy Thanksgiving.  We hope you are surrounded by those you love, your meal is beyond memorable, your Eisch wine glass is never empty, and you have the opportunity to raise it and count your blessings.

Cheers to you!

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