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2015 Thanksgiving Wine Post-Mortem

4 Dec

Since I share my Thanksgiving wine choices with you each year, I also give you my feedback after the big meal.


Here are the wines I provided for the 2015 event, and my postmortem notes, with a rating score not for the wine but that I give MYSELF for choosing crowd-pleasing wines for the table.

2014 Vale Do Homem Arinto Vinho Verde
Even more of a crowd pleaser than my normal Mosel Riesling! Got raves from all types who tried it, including 1) those who love wine, 2) those who don’t normally drink alcohol at all, 3) those who don’t’ normally drink white wines, and 4) those who normally drink only  Chardonnay. For me, it was a perfect match for the soup course, the gentler portions of the meal, and a great palate cleanser with low ABV, but isn’t up to the task of dark meat and savory gravy. A-

2014 Les Fossiles Domain Phillipe Raimbault Sancerre
The wine that I adored and a few others actually refused. I thought this wine was perfect with beautiful minerality, gentle fruit & bracing acidity- but those who like white wines at the table were turned off by the hint of grapefruit, evidently to them it drank more like a sauvignon blanc. I was stunned at their response to this delicious wine and think refined wine palates will agree with me, but I have to score with the public opinion on my pairing choice: I dropped the ball on this one. C-

2014 Lelievre  Gris De Toul Rosé
The other massive hit at the table, even the professed “rosé haters” drank and adored this wine, and the non-wine drinkers used this as their red. I’m sorry I only have a couple of bottlers left in the cellar as it is a stellar and tasty rosé blend. A gentle giant of a wine, it easily matched every part of the meal, from the soup to main course to dessert. A+

2013 Lieu Dit Cabernet Franc, Santa Ynez Valley
Like the bird, this was a centerpiece wine that people ooh’d and aaah’d over. The red lovers were stunned by my inclusion of a cab franc in my wine lineup, but this wine was a killer thanksgiving choice! I’m still in shock that a Cabernet Franc managed to pull the spot I reserve for my finest Pinot Noir or Gamay (Cru Beaujolais). But Lieu Dit impressed me at my first tasting, and was a home run for Thanksgiving Dinner.  Worth every penny! A

2006 Château Larteau Grand Vin de Bordeaux
Big, bold flavors.  For those who love the big reds, this is perfect and matches the savory side of the dark turkey meat, gravy, and the meat-infused stuffing. While it’s not my personal favorite for this occasion, this huge & very serious red might terrify white wine drinkers but was an excellent choice for the meal for the red wine lovers who see the bold cassis and tannins as the liquid equivalent to cranberry sauce.  B+

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t wine 1

à votre santé!

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