Monday, November 19, 2018 • Gift Baskets, Holidays
As we gather around the Thanksgiving table this year, there’s one thing we’re all grateful for – wine!
There can be a lot of pressure on the host for this food-centric holiday. With so many dishes on the menu, it can be challenging to find the right bottle of vino to match. After all, which wine is able to complement white and dark turkey meat, herb-filled stuffing, sweet potato casserole, AND cranberry sauce?
Whether you’re hosting dinner this year or attending as a guest, we have plenty of gift baskets featuring a delicious bottle of wine that will make setting the table easier. They contain gourmet snacks and wines from award-winning names like Robert Mondavi and Cliffside Vineyards. Here are a few options to choose from, as well as some ideas on how to pair them with your holiday menu.
1. California Classic Gift Basket
Are you playing host to an eclectic bunch this Thanksgiving? Offer some variety with this collection of California wines. All hailing from different vineyards throughout The Golden State, these wines are ideal for lighter holiday menus.
Blakemore California Chardonnay is a delicate, buttery wine that pairs perfectly with pork, rich fish like salmon and tuna, poultry, and vegetarian dishes. The Rock Falls Merlot is best enjoyed with beef, lamb, and veal, while the Cliffside Cabernet Sauvignon’s notes of cherry and pepper make it the ideal pairing for beef, lamb, game, and poultry.
These vintages don’t just pair well with your Thanksgiving favorites. You’ll also enjoy snacking on accompanying snacks such as sea salt and olive oil crackers, honey mustard pretzel nuggets, and garlic & herb cheese wedges.
2. Kiarna California Champagne Assortment Gift Basket
You can’t go wrong with a little bubbly on Thanksgiving. Sparkling wine and champagne pair perfectly with traditional dishes like turkey, cranberry sauce, and stuffing. Their versatility means that they can also be enjoyed throughout the meal, giving the cook one less thing to worry about.
Guests will love this award-winning sparkling wine from Kiarna Vineyards. A bit dry and light bodied, it won the Silver Medal in 2013 from International Wine Channel TV Awards. It’s a crisp blend of granny smith apple and pear with flavors of white peach, sage and tarragon. Try pairing it this Thanksgiving with salty dishes, camembert cheese, cream sauces, and potpies.
This gift basket also comes stocked with an assortment of gourmet snacks that guests can graze on before turkey time. They’ll feel fancy in their Thanksgiving best as they nibble on choices like bruschetta Italian toast, garlic & herb cheese wedges, chocolate caramels, and Italian white chocolate.
3. Thankful Red and White Wine Pairing
Can’t decide which wines to serve alongside appetizers and the main course? Cover both parts of the menu with this cabernet sauvignon and chardonnay duo from Cliffside Vineyards.
Cabernet Sauvignon has long been considered an excellent wine choice with robust meals, and Thanksgiving is no exception. With a medium-to-dark body and decent alcohol levels, it’s neither overpowering nor underwhelming. Cliffside’s blend carries black cherry and currant undertones, with a hint of vanilla, that complement the traditional flavors of turkey and stuffing.
Cliffside Chardonnay’s blend of red delicious apples, baked pears, and ripe apricot have earned it six industry awards since 2009. Elegant and light, it’s right at home with creamy casseroles, soups, winter squash, turkey, and fish like black cod. Hosts can also pour this wine along with included snacks such as mixed olives, cheese straws, brownie cookies, and hazelnut truffles.
4. Robert Mondavi Private Selection Gift Basket
Hosting or attending an elegant Thanksgiving soiree? Surprise the host with this collection of gourmet wines and cheeses.
Robert Mondavi Private Selection wines are understated yet refined. The Chardonnay is a light-bodied white wine that pairs perfectly with buttery mashed potatoes while serving as an excellent contrast to savory foods like pot pies.
Meanwhile, the medium-bodied cabernet sauvignon boasts layers of blackberry, plum, and cassis that are pleasant and smooth. This “big red” wine is comforting during the colder months, pairing well with rich gravies and dishes like a sweet potato casserole. As a fuller-bodied wine, the Merlot is best when served alongside dishes like pork tenderloin or sausage stuffing.
For happy grazing before and after the meal, enjoy choosing from snacks like cabernet wine biscuits, chocolate peanut butter malt balls, bacon habanero flat crisps, and almond cookies.
5. Rodney Strong Estate Collection Gift Basket
If you’re hosting dinner for six to eight guests, consider opening a new bottle of wine with each course. You’ll want to progress from white to red, starting with the lightest vintage and working your way up to the fuller-bodied blends.
Take the guesswork out of the wine menu with this basket of four wines from Rodney Strong. Begin by pairing the creamy Chalk Hill chardonnay along with mild, buttery or creamy dishes like risottos and cream-enhanced soups and sauces. Next up is the Charlotte's Home Sauvignon Blanc, a livelier white wine that goes well with herb-filled stuffing, sweet potatoes, and poultry.
Next comes the star of Thanksgiving – the soft and silky Russian River pinot noir. This lighter red will pair well with the main course, as its versatility allows it to complement a variety of flavors. Finish off the evening with the strong and bold Alexander Valley Cabernet, which is delightful to enjoy along with the basket’s array of sweets. Choose from gourmet walnut cookies, cabernet wine biscuits, rich chocolate caramels and more.
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