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Thanksgiving Wine Pairings – Palm Beach Illustrated

Michael and Theresa Drapkin of West Palm Wine Co. Photo by Anna Mucci
Michael and Theresa Drapkin of West Palm Wine Co. Photo by Anna Mucci

In June, Michael and Theresa Drapkin opened West Palm Wine Co., an independent wine shop “dedicated to the intersection of small-batch, natural, and traditional wines.” While most hosts tend to choose one, maybe two wines to pair with their Thanksgiving feasts, we decided to task the Drapkins with selecting a wine for each element of the meal. Here, Michael offers their pairing picks, all of which are available at their shop.

Whole Homemade Thanksgiving Turkey with All the Sides

Turkey

“Pair it with a delicate bottle of red that can benefit from a slight chill before serving. The 2021 Jean Foillard Beaujolais would be a delightful marriage. This wine from Burgundy is made with Gamay from old vines in the hands of an iconic winemaker. Tart red fruit, spicy, and refreshing.”

Homemade Red Cranberry Sauce for the Holidays

Cranberry Sauce 

“The sweet and tart quality of the timeless cranberry sauce needs a wine with similar qualities. Our selection is an off-dry pink bubbly, the NV Renardat-Fâche in Savoie, France, called Cerdon Bugey. It’s fizzy, cranberry-hued, and will wed nicely with the dance of sweet and tart on the palate.”

Homemade Sweet Potato Casserole for Thanksgiving

Sweet Potato Casserole with Marshmallows 

“The richness of this dish requires a wine equally as powerful but that can also act as a balance to the density of flavors. Our choice would be the 2020 Remi Jobard Bourgogne Blanc, which is made with 100 percent Chardonnay. The wine is fermented and aged in wood, which imbues it with strength and an unctuous texture.” 

Homemade Thanksgiving Stuffing Made with Bread and Herbs

Stuffing

“A formidable stuffing screams for a glass of sturdy red wine. We look to the Syrah grape to fill this role. The 2020 Pax Mahle North Coast Syrah has all the benchmark qualities of a refined Syrah: notes of smoked meat, damp earth, black fruit, and olives.”

Pumpkin Pie for the Holidays

Pumpkin Pie

“A rule of thumb is to pair sweet with sweet. One of the most common mistakes is when a sweet dessert is paired with a dry Champagne, [as] the sweetness overpowers the intricacies of dry Champagne. Instead, look for an airy Riesling, like the 2020 Willi Schaefer Riesling hailing from the Mosel in Germany.”

A view of a rustic crumble macaroni and cheese dish in a skillet.

Mac and Cheese

“The warm pasta oozing with cheese deserves a classy, racy bottle of Blanc de Blancs from Champagne. Our selection is the NV Pierre Moncuit Champagne from the Grand Cru village of Le Mesnil-sur-Oger. This wine is intricately detailed, like the finest needlepoint. It has the hallmark qualities we all adore in a good bottle of Champagne: delicacy counterbalanced by powerful aromas and flavors of brioche, baked apple, and spice. Exhilaratingly dry and snappy.” 

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