Turkey is a white meat that is low in fat, which is why it can dry out if not cooked properly. So, your wine matches should ideally be either a full-bodied white wine or a medium-bodied red, with low or medium tannin and moderately high acidity. I did not know this about turkey and the perfect wine to complement it intentionally, but by making one of the biggest Christmas mistakes, my grandma will not stop talking about every Christmas.
It was the 2015 Christmas, and I was saddled with the responsibility of picking the Christmas turkey wine. Christmas is known for barging through crowds, crazy last-minute hurries, and I went through hell before I could pick some bottles of wine. I felt like I had surmounted the world when I finally paid for the wine. I drove home expecting to be welcomed in grand style for buying the most expensive wine on the rack, but my expectation was cut short when my grandmother, who happens to be a wine classic, told me I bought the wrong wine. How? I was shocked.
I thought it was a Christmas prank. It became apparent when she refused to drink the wine. I have never felt so bad on a Christmas day, I could not return the wine due to the distance, and there was my grandmother munching her turkey without wine. I tried to convince her to try my rejected wine but all to no avail. She will instead drink water.
I later got to know not all wines go well with turkey, so I took it upon myself to research the best wine for turkey and right my wrong the next Christmas. The truth is, I discovered more than I can ever imagine, and I sure outdid my grandma’s wine expectation the following Christmas. However, Old Sally will not stop talking about the 2015 wrong wine selection. Here are my top ten wines that best go with Christmas turkey, and I hope you won’t make the same mistake I made or hopefully unlearn the wrong wine selection for Christmas turkey.
Table of Contents
Once a wine is said to be oaked, it means the wine has been aged in oak barrels. Oak barrel ageing influences the structure of the wine, its flavour and fragrance, combining elements like vanilla, spice or smoke. It is the same for this South African Thelema produced wine. It is purely classic in its clean fruit relish, leaving a fresh finish. This wine’s staggering complexity is surprising to me; it is incredible for such a young wine that got into the market in the year 2016. It has from them become a predominant wine that goes well with turkey. If you and your family prefer white wine over red, then this is worth having on your table for Christmas.
- It originated from South Africa.
- It has chardonnay as the dominant varietal.
I never presumed this Grenache dominant vintage wine in a silk-lined wooden box will go down well with turkey. This is the wine that erased my wrong wine selection. I took it upon myself to know more about this full-bodied, concentrated silky wine, and I was not surprised this wine scored 92/100 Parker points. This unusual 2003 Chateauneuf du Pape Tradition peppery wine exudes the spirit of Provence with its lavender signature and sweet black cherries and raspberries top-notch finish.
- It contains Sulphite
- It originated from France
- It possesses 12% Alcohol Content
- It is manufactured by Pierre Usseglio
- It weighs 3 kilograms
Not all wine goes well with turkey no doubt, but did you know even a wine that is said to go well with turkey might not go well with cold turkey? Some people like their turkey cold, like my cousin, Daniel. If you or you have a family member like my cousin who likes his/her turkey cold, think of blessing taste this Christmas with Pinot noir and be rest assured he or she will forever be grateful. When it comes to cold turkey, consider a somewhat lighter red wine like a pinot noir by Domaine Joseph Drouhin The wine’s intense acidity, as well as its quite a versatility on the table, make it an unbroken choice for pairing not only with turkey but also the handful of sides that will cover the rest of your plate during Christmas.
- It originated from France
- Sub-region produced in Casablanca Valley
- Manufactured by Diverse Wineries
- Has Pinot Nero as the dominant varietal
- 0.75 litres volume and weighs 3kg
Beaujolais Villages wines offer exceptional value to both specialists and those just exploring red wine. Beaujolais-Villages can be complex and elegant – and, like most Beaujolais wines, they are easy to drink, fresh-tasting and moderately light-bodied. Made wholly from Gamay, the reason for its high acid content, low tannins, and succulent mouthfeel make it one of the best bottles to enhance turkey.
- 0.75 litres
- Originated from France
- Contains 12.5 Percent Alcohol Content
- Manufactured by Domaine Joseph Drouhin
- Region Produced in Beaujolais
Produced with the care and attention to detail, you would presume from a wine lord like Bodegas Faustino Martinez-Oyen. The wine’s consumer appeal is unparalleled judging from how it is coldly fermented to maintain smooth fruity aromas and flavours.
It is made from 80% Tempranillo and 20% Garnacha grapes to achieve its comely pink colour and a delicate balance of acidity and alcohol.
- 750 Millilitres.
- Originated from Spain.
- It’s alcohol Content is13.5 Percent by Volume.
- It has Grenache as its dominant varietal:
- Varietal Composition: Garnacha; Tempranillo;
Produced by a famous brand like Cielo e Terra, a joint venture between the Cielo family, who have been making wine in the Veneto for over a century, and the CantinedeiColliBerici. This full and round wine from the ColliBerici’s enormous vineyard resources, combined with the Cielo family’s winemaking skills is notable for its unmatched taste with turkey and other treats. It eases the pressure of finding different wine for diverse Christmas dishes. They produce wines at par with the money value and international and indigenous delicacies.
- Units: 750.0 millilitre
- Country of origin: Italy
- Alcohol Content: 12 Percent by Volume
- Dominant Varietal: Merlot
- Liquid Volume: 0.75 Litres
If you like a Chardonnay with a difference, this is one to assay. Lovely oak-smoked relish, beautiful colour. The inviting aroma hints freshly slice pears and apples, while the delicately creamy note proffers way to reveal softer hints of baking spices like cloves and nutmeg. It is topped with a feel of butter, and this interspersed wine has a long, crisp finish.
- Type: White Wine
- Dominant Varietal: Chardonnay
- Region Produced in Clarksburg
- Varietal Composition: Chardonnay
- Manufacturer: Bogle Winery
A dreamy soft pink, elegant and flavoured red berries with a tinge of spice. Lots of finesse, a charming wine by Henri Gaillard, one of the best wine merchants in the Côtes de Provence area for the Crus etDomaines de France Company. He was very well-known among the wine-growers for his attentiveness to specialist critics and how he brought to life, many varieties of old grape varieties. This is proof of the magic he makes with grapes.
- Volume: 2250 Millilitres
- Country of origin: France
- Alcohol Content: 12.5 Percent by Volume
- Brand: Quinson Provence
- Type: Rose
Defaix Chablis exhibits hard notes on the nose with touches of green apple. The taste is classy, dry and characterized by crisp, citrus flavours overlaid with dingy notes. One of the reasons behind Chablis’ freakish taste is that it is kept in its fine lees for 8 to 12 months.
The lees are routinely moved around during the six first months to enrich the structure of the wine. The vinification is solely done in stainless steel vessels to conserve the freshness of the wine.
- Item Weight: 1.65 Kilograms
- Alcohol Content: 12.5 Percent by Volume
- Brand: DomaineDefaix
- Type: White Wine
- Dominant Varietal: Chardonnay
Viorica wine is made entirely from Viorica grapes, harvested manually and vinified by the traditional method with no oak influences. It has the fragrance of acacia and basil flowers- Its golden colour, with bright amber shades, is complemented with its balanced and soft taste. Certainly, Viorica de Purcari is a noble class jewel.
- Units:750.0 millilitre
- Country of origin: Moldova
- Alcohol Content: 13.5 Percent by Volume
- Total acidity: 5.7
- Varietal Composition: 100% Viorica
Wine With Turkey Christmas For UK Buying Guides
Christmas shopping can be challenging, and one has to be careful. This carefulness extends to picking the right wine. You can decide to pick a versatile wine that goes with many dishes to save yourself the stress but deep down – no one wants a boring Christmas. It is always classy to choose a different wine that highlights each dish’s uniqueness.
A perfect time to try out new wines you have not tried before is Christmas. So, do not be rigid and hold unto what you have always had. Variety remains the spice of life. Do not be surprised your family members will embrace that bottle you want to overlook. Give a new wine a trial!
The best thing to heighten the taste of turkey is a good wine.
Finding a perfect pairing can be exhausting and nerve-racking. These guidelines will aid you in buying the appropriate wine for Christmas turkey and have your family grateful for a wine well- picked wine.
Consider The Flavours
The fact that a flavour is well- known or liked by many does not mean it is perfect for you or your family. Consider your family taste and strike a balance.
Wines of a varietal share basic characteristics with other wines like it. Merlots, for instance, have differing quantities of ripe fruit fragrances -cassis, raspberry, black cherry, and plum. But even within a varietal, wines can vary quite a bit because of their style: components derived from the winemaking process.
For example, some merlots have a woody or smoky/char flavour emanating from the toasted oak vessels in which they are aged. So do not write off a varietal because of a few bottles you did not like. You might not have experienced its range of styles or quality.
Consider The Food That Will Be Served
Undoubtedly, particular wines are often associated with specific dishes, as the white-wine-with-fish rule expresses, but that does not dismiss the fact that some wines can be perfect for more than one dish.
Full-bodied wines such as most cabernets and merlots usually complement rich dishes, while fruity-style wines such as Sauvignon Blancs or Pinot grigio/Gris go with lighter fare, such as grilled fish. The complexity of wine defines the range of food flavours that will enhance it.
Do Not Depend On Consistency
Many people go after brands that have been claimed to be consistent in their winemaking and taste but forget even the best wineries cannot produce consistent quality from one vintage to another. There is no harm in tasting the new wine before placing your money on it. A taste can make you change your mind. Do not buy on the assumption that a winery that has been consistently producing a particular varietal you and your family love will always be as you have thought.
Do not Automatically Equate High Price with High Quality
High price does not always mean good taste. Many high- priced wines are splendid unquestionably, but that does not automatically make all expensive wine worth buying. In my wine tasting journey and the reviews I got from friends and family, most of the well-reviewed wines are inexpensive while some pocket wrecking wines had average rates.
Wines instructions vary from product to product as well as brands. Storage instruction of a particular brand may differ from others. Make sure you read the instruction well and be sure you have all it takes to preserve it well. Most wines, if not all, are best served at a temperature that enhances its flavour and structure. Be sure you can keep this wine at the required storage temperature.
Frequently Asked Question [FAQs]
What are sulphites in wine? Are sulphites dangerous?
Sulphites in wine are chemical compounds (sulphur dioxide, or SO2) that occur naturally, to a varying degree, in all types of wine. Because sulphites are anti-microbial, it can exterminate unwanted bacteria and wild yeast during winemaking and act as both a wine’s preservative and enhancer. There is no need for panicking. Sulphites are naturally occurring elements in all wines, generated in amounts between 6 to 40 parts per million (ppm), they are not chemical additives, and they are present in many other foods as well.
The health risk involving sulphites would be an allergic reaction. While it’s regarded as a food allergen, a true allergic reaction in the form of anaphylaxis is, is a rare event.
How to store wine?
Your wine’s number one rival is heating, so keeping wine storage temperature within a rational range is crucial. Anything above 70 Fahrenheit will aid and intensify the wine ageing. Do not freeze your wine either it will make it lose quality rapidly.
Keep your wines as far away from sunlight as possible, even from indoor lights if you can get away with it. Seventy per cent humidity is considered ideal. The most prominent danger in too little moisture is drying out the cork, which could allow air seepage and thus oxidation and spoiling of the wine. The danger in too much humidity is moulding on the bottle and label. It is also advisable to store your wine on their side to prevent drying out the cork.
A lot of bustles is already happening inside an ageing bottle of wine. Do not agitate or speed up those chemical reactions by unnecessary shaking, transportation, or vibrations of the wine.
What are Tannins?
Tannins are a compound found in wine that gives the wine an astringent, mouth-drying effect. Tannins in found in the skins, seeds, and stalks of grapes, and play a prominent role in the chemical composition of red wine. They help define a red wine’s weight (light-bodied, medium-bodied, and full) and its perceived sugar balance (sweet, semi-sweet, medium-sweet, dry, etc.).Crafting an excellent red wine requires expert knowledge of how to enhance the tannic nature of the wine best.
Like I mentioned earlier, I suppose you have learnt a thing or two about wine selection for Christmas turkey, and you won’t make the same mistake I made. Give yourself and your family a memorable Christmas experience by staying guided in your wine selection as stated carefully in the buying guide and check out for yourself the listed top products before finally making a suitable selection.
It will interest you to know that the wines above have varieties that go with other Christmas turkey. Upon checking them out, you will eventually be introduced to these other varieties. Having tried these carefully selected wines, I see it dim fit to recommend three products based on my best value, the best choice and the premium choice.
Pinot noir is the most pocket friendly to me- Economical for its size and quality. It can as well go with not only turkey but also a fraction of sides during Christmas while Oaked chardonnay makes my best choice list for its versatility and market dominance. Pierre Usseglio’sChateauneuf du Pape 2003 remains my premium product for the fact that it can be cellared for 10-12 years, its excellent Parker point and dominant taste make it a not so hard premium choice too.