It’s quite possible that this wine, Becker Vineyards Cabernet Reserve, is the first Cabernet I can truly say I enjoyed. That’s likely because at $40 a bottle it was well over my normal wine budget. I guess you DO get what you pay for! I actually only paid $20 for this bottle at a fund raising event so giving back worked in my favor. Because I knew this bottle of wine would likely be better than most I typically drink I planned to save it for a special occasion, Thanksgiving perhaps. But then after a few weeks just sitting there I figured Tuesday was as good of reason to celebrate as any other day so I cracked it open.
I am not typically a fan of Cabernet due to the fact that it is generally fuller in body making it seem kind of thick and heavy. They also tend to be a little too dry for my taste. This Texas wine was heavy but it had a really pleasant taste that was well balanced and filled with dark fruit flavors. Better yet, it tasted just as good a few days later which I can never say for my bargain wine. I don’t know that I’ve ever had a Texas wine but I approve of this one. It would be perfect for Thanksgiving dinner if you are on the hunt for a nice bottle of red.
Speaking of Thanksgiving if you are not the wine expert in your family and you need some tips on what to serve, I have you covered! When you are hosting it is always a good idea to have both red and white wine to be sure that you have a little something for everyone. While some people (me) like both red and white, others are pretty set in one option or the other. Thanksgiving, as you know, is filled with flavors from sweet to savory so I’d suggest opting for wines that are more subtle so they pair well with all of the options.
Pinot Grigio or Sauvignon Blanc: While some may go the traditional route and go for Chardonnay, I’d opt for the lighter and more fruity white varietals. By fruity I don’t mean sweet, I just mean they have a crisp flavor that will likely pair well with turkey, potatoes, and stuffing. Especially when you are putting all of those things in your mouth at once.
Champagne: People tend to think of Champagne (or other sparkling white wine) as a celebration drink reserved for New Years or weddings but it is a great wine to pair with big, savory meals. Plus it can always be mixed with a little cranberry juice for a fun cocktail option for those that don’t love wine and will be equally good with dessert. Plus Thanksgiving is a celebration of sorts so bust out the bubbly and give a toast of gratitude.
Pinot Noir: I have found that people who drink red wine tend to be a little more picky about what they will or will not drink than those who drink white. I also think that there is a bigger difference in taste between a good red and an inexpensive red than there is with a good white and a inexpensive white. Pinot Noir to the rescue! Pinot Noir is typically a crowd pleaser because it is subtle and kind of in the middle of the spectrum for red wine. It also pairs well with a variety of dishes and won’t compete with the flavors over loading your palette.
Zinfandel: No, not the pink stuff. Red Zinfandel. It tends to be more dry than Pinot Noir but not quite as full-bodied as a Cabernet. It typically has a peppery finish that gives it a little kick. Italy may well be known for their fine wines but Zinfandel is kind of America’s wine. Opt for a California Zin.
If wine isn’t your thing, consider a signature cocktail instead! We have our eyes set on this Pumpkin Spice Cosmo recipe from Lemon & Lavender. And after dinner- we’d suggest a creamy hot buttered rum!