If you’re not sure what kind of wine to serve with that Thanksgiving turkey and ham, don’t worry too much about it.
“If you have a favourite wine, just because they say you should drink riesling with turkey, if you like Chardonnay there’s nothing wrong with that,” said Blair Gaume.
“The typical white with white meat and red with red meat is kind of out the door. That was kind of a rule of thumb years ago,” said the owner of the Liquor Crossing/Wine Centre in Red Deer.
That being said, Gaume said his No. 1 wine choice at Thanksgiving is a riesling — not an overly sweet one — but a nice riesling really matches well with ham and turkey. It’s a versatile wine, he said.
Rosés are also good with turkey and ham. In Europe rosés are very popular, and they do sell here but not as much as red and white wines, said Gaume, who has a long history in the wine business in Red Deer.
Rosés are typically a little bit lighter and most are fairly dry.
As for red wines, you don’t want anything too heavy because ham and turkey aren’t a strong tasting meat like steak or stew for example. A pinot noir would be a really nice match, Gaume said.
He finds that people begin to buy heavier wines as it gets colder out — more reds and maybe more fully-bodied whites like a chardonnay.
“I find with Thanksgiving there’s so much food there how do you match one wine with every food. It’s almost impossible so just go with a lighter style red for sure, and a versatile white.”
There is a good choice of wines in the $15 to $20 range, he said.
As for beer, the craft beer market has exploded, including locally, Gaume said. “It’s unreal how much craft beer I carry now compared with what I used to four years ago.”
“You go out to a pub now they’ll usually have a craft beer on tap. … It’s quality stuff too.” And the pricing for local craft beer is not “off the wall.”
“I wouldn’t think of beer first off when I think of Thanksgiving.”
However, fruit beers would perhaps be something to drink at Thanksgiving because they are a little bit lighter, he said.