Great Thanksgiving Wines, $10 or Less

  • Drink Up!

    Thanksgiving dinner is harmony on the plate, but not in the glass. The mishmash of flavors — buttery, creamy, tart, roasted and savory — can make choosing wine a pain. Here are some basic pairing rules gleaned from years of trial and error. Too much oak, tannin, florals or alcohol can overwhelm or clash with food. Best is a wine that brings a burst of acidity for punch and cuts through anything super-rich. Wines with medium body work because they are not too powerful but can stand up to heavy dishes like casseroles. Some spice and fruitiness is OK and tastes great with herby stuffings or anything with pork. Most important, don’t feel pressure to overspend; expect bargains and drink what you like. Here, my 10 for $10, pulled with help from my favorite wine shops. They can take you through the whole meal, from appetizers to post-dinner sandwiches, and are available in fairly wide distribution — in some cases, direct from the winemaker. Photo Credit: yashima
    NV Cristalino Brut Cava and Brut Rosé
  • NV Cristalino Brut Cava and Brut Rosé

    Price: $10 Cristalino is the ultimate bargain sparkler. Mike Baker of Chicago’s Wine Discount Center says: “Cristalino’s rosé is fruity and dry and works brilliantly as an apéritif or with dinner.” Photo Credit: wine.com
    2007 Louis Latour Ardèche
  • 2007 Louis Latour Ardèche

    Price: $9 Howie Rubin of Bauer Wines in Boston chose this unoaked, Rhône Chardonnay for its crisp, appley bite: “It won’t weigh you down.” Photo Credit: Louis Latour
    2008 Santa Rita 120 Chardonnay
  • 2008 Santa Rita 120 Chardonnay

    Price: $7.99 This Chilean Chardonnay delivers lush tropical fruit and orange zest. It’s rounder and fuller than the Latour—great with anything creamy. Photo Credit: Santa Rita
    2008 Willow Crest Winery Yakima Valley Pinot Gris
  • 2008 Willow Crest Winery Yakima Valley Pinot Gris

    Price: $10 Baker commends Willow Crest for making delicious value wines: “This dry white is rich, textured and versatile, with lively acidity and orchard fruit flavors.” Photo Credit: Photo Credit: Willow Crest
    2008 Snoqualmie Winemaker’s Select Riesling
  • 2008 Snoqualmie Winemaker’s Select Riesling

    Price: $8.49 This Washington-state Riesling combines apricot and pear with lingering honey and a tart edge. Photo Credit: Snoqualmie.com
    2009 Georges Duboeuf Beaujolais Nouveau
  • 2009 Georges Duboeuf Beaujolais Nouveau

    Price: $9.99 A classic Thanksgiving pairing, this Gamay is light and refreshing, with abundant red fruit. Photo Credit: Jerichowine.com
    2007 Evodia Garnacha
  • 2007 Evodia Garnacha

    Price: $9 Rubin loves the juicy, jammy flavors in this Spanish Grenache: “This is one of the few wines that pairs with cranberry sauce.” Photo Credit: Shoppersvineyard.com
    2008 Casillero del Diablo Carmenère
  • 2008 Casillero del Diablo Carmenère

    Price: $10-$11 Chile is a hot spot for affordability, and this spicy, plummy Carmenère from Concha y Toro should be easy to find well under its market price of $11. Photo Credit: Garyswine.com
    2008 Viña Los Vascos Cabernet Sauvignon
  • 2008 Viña Los Vascos Cabernet Sauvignon

    Price: $10 You’ll get red fruit and herbal spiciness in this Chilean Cabernet. Photo Credit: Wineaccess.com
    NV Urbanite Cellars Redart Table Wine
  • NV Urbanite Cellars Redart Table Wine

    Price: $10-$11 Chiara Shannon of Berkeley, California’s K&L Wine Merchants says Redart offers superb balance: “Cabernet provides structure and a core of fruit. Syrah adds smoke and gaminess. Zinfandel lends a punchy spice.” Photo Credit: Klwines.com
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