Alain Gras Saint-Romain Blanc 2016 | $39.99
The relatively new Burgundy appellation of Saint-Romain is quickly becoming one of those “hidden gems” of the wine world, as the wines from this village get better and better but the prices are not soaring to the heights of nearby Meursault. This Chardonnay from 40 year old vines grown on the small Alain Gras estate is partially destemmed and raised in 20% new French oak, resulting in a complex blend of poached pear, toasted vanilla bean, creamy suggestions of hazelnut, and persistent minerality. Traditionally paired with shellfish and white fish, I think this will provide an elegant counterpoint to the endless savory and herbal bouquet of a traditional Thanksgiving spread.
Rustenberg Stellenbosch Chardonnay 2018 | $21.99
Rustenberg’s estate in Stellenbosch dates back to the late 17th century, making this one of the most venerable properties in the region’s vinous pantheon. The Chardonnay is made from mostly estate fruit which is whole-cluster wild fermented and sees about 25% new French oak, where it rests on the lees without racking for about ten months. The result is a powerhouse of flavor at an eye-poppingly low price: apricot, orange peel, marzipan, and vanilla bean suffuse the nose and palate, balanced by the perfect measure of toasted oak and refreshing acidity.
K Vintners Viognier Art den Hoed Vineyard Yakima Valley 2017 | $25.99
Good Viognier should have forward fruit aromas coupled with hints of waxy spice and minerals, all of which make it a lovely match with roast turkey, sweet potatoes, and all the other usual trimmings. K Vintners’ Viognier comes from a high altitude site in Washington state’s Yakima Valley and is raised in neutral French oak, which allows for the development of complexity without the burden of oakiness. Peaches and other stone fruits combine with floral tones on a fine mineral framework, finishing with subtly bitter orange zest. A delightfully different turkey-day companion from a top Washington state producer.
Patricia Green Cellars Reserve Pinot Noir Willamette Valley 2018 | $25.99
Patricia Green Cellars produces a wide range of single vineyard estate Pinot Noirs that rank among the best and most important expressions of Pinot Noir in Oregon’s Willamette Valley. Their Reserve label is a cuvee of barrels from the single vineyard wines that has become something of a “house-style” wine, showcasing the high quality standard of the estate while maintaining stylistic consistency. Refined and poised, this Pinot exhibits limpid pomegranate and red berry fruits with floral underpinnings, firm but fine tannins, and a mouth-watering finish.
Famille Perrin Chateau de Beaucastel Chateauneuf-du-Pape 2017 | Compare at $75 – $90 | Our Price $69.99
Few pairings can be more classic than Chateauneuf-du-Pape on the Thanksgiving dinner table. The combination of deep, ripe fruits, warm spices, and herbaceous complexity gives the wines from this appellation the breadth to interact with the potpourri of different flavors, savory and sweet, which tend to be gathered around the turkey. Beaucastel itself is iconic, employing thirteen of the fifteen grape varieties allowed by law, including an unusually high percentage of Mourvedre (30% in 2017). This wine is deep, expansive, and powerful, with a staggering range of nuances and a bold presence. As it is also quite young, I recommend decanting for at least an hour or two before serving.