For food and wine lovers, Thanksgiving is the best holiday of the year. A day dedicated to gratitude centered on sharing an elaborate meal with the ones we love. When that meal takes a whole day to prepare, every dish deserves a wine that can elevate it to the next level. Thanksgiving dinner is also a meal that typically ends in a whole smorgasbord of desserts, mainly pies. So, why let the Thanksgiving wine pairing fun stop with dinner? Try these pie and wine pairings this Thanksgiving for an unforgettable finale to one of the most delicious days of the year.
Apple Pie + Gewürztraminer
No Thanksgiving is complete without a slice of apple pie. Buttery, flaky pie crust coupled with tart apple, caramelized sugar, and warm spice flavors begs for a luscious wine. Ideally one with both fruit and spice notes. This makes Gewürztraminer the perfect wine pairing for apple pie.
Gewürztraminer is an aromatic variety mainly hailing from Alsace with low acidity and higher alcohol levels. This variety is characterized by fruit aromas like lychee, apricot, peach, and grapefruit, plus tell-tale aromas of ginger, rose, and honey. Most Gewürztraminer has one or two grams of residual sugar, but will seem sweeter regardless because of the fruity aromas. Therefore, this wine is a great match for desserts like apple pie.
The cool-climate foothills of Anderson Valley animate this aromatic variety. Tropical aromas of lychee and candied peach, a silky texture, and a dry, nutty finish.
Cranberry & Pear Pie + Schiava
Cranberry and pear pie houses classic fall flavors all in one pie crust. Tart cranberries come together with sweet, juicy pears for the ideal complementary bite. If cranberry and pear pie isn’t a staple on your Thanksgiving table, then perhaps a blueberry or cherry pie is making an appearance this holiday season. Schiava is an excellent wine pairing for all fruit pies that offer tart and sweet flavors.
This fruit forward red wine hails from the majestic mountains of Alto Adige. Schiava produces light bodied red wines with moderate tannins, floral aromas, and prominent notes of fresh berries. The tart, fruity flavors of cranberry and pear pie will shine alongside a glass of Schiava.
Light texture contrasts concentrated ripe fruit flavors of cranberry, sour cherry, and wild strawberry with delicate floral notes
Pumpkin Pie + Chenin Blanc
Rich and decadent with heartwarming spice, pumpkin pie is the ultimate Thanksgiving dessert. Sweet pumpkin combined with spices like cloves, nutmeg, ginger, and cinnamon make for some of the most memorable fall flavors. Grab a bottle of Chenin Blanc for a mouth-watering pumpkin pie wine pairing.
Chenin Blanc’s high acidity balances the richness of pumpkin pie. While the wine’s rich, luscious flavors, like quince, baked apple, mandarin orange, ginger, and honey, complement the flavors of this Thanksgiving classic. Additionally, oak aged examples of Chenin Blanc are even richer with aromas of butterscotch, nutmeg, and marzipan. This is a variety that is heavily influenced by winemaking methods and offers versatile styles and varying levels of sweetness. So, do a little research or ask a wine professional for help when shopping for Chenin Blanc to make sure you get what you want.
Limestone soils in the heart of the Loire produce Chenin Blanc with lively acidity that balances luscious aromas and flavors of orange peel, honey, almond and cream.
Pecan Pie + Zinfandel
Pecan pie is the quintessential sweet and savory Thanksgiving dessert. Sweet caramelized sugar and toasty, nutty pecans make for an addicting combination. This indulgent pie calls for a powerhouse wine to back it up.
For a delicious pecan pie wine pairing, look no further than Zinfandel. Known as Primitivo in Italy and Tribidrag in Croatia, Zinfandel offers the ideal balance between fruit and spice. This wine is characterized by prominent red and black fruit aromas coupled with spice notes like black pepper, licorice, and star anise. Oak aged Zinfandel adds vanilla, warm spices, and burnt sugar to the mix. The wine’s fruity flavors of raspberry, blackberry, and blueberry, along with spice notes, will be enlivened by a slice of sweet and savory pecan pie.
A classic and elegant Lodi Zinfandel. Loaded with blueberry, blackberry, and raspberry flavors. Medium bodied and easy drinking with an extra touch of cinnamon and redwood bark.
This article was written by Nikki Dickerson. For more great content, check out her blog at palmandvine.com.