Thanksgiving Tips 101

Everyone has felt the pressure of all of the holiday festivities. The most important thing for your sanity, the safety of your family and friends, and perhaps most importantly, your heart health (note: I’m not a doctor), is to DRINK GOOD WINE!!! After this base is covered, even if your turkey (or your gift ideas) turn out like Clark Griswald’s, no worries—you have cold cuts in the fridge!

A few wines will definitely be making an appearance at my holiday table, and a few wines will be hidden after opening so that I can have them all to myself.  Here we go:

  1. Marie AmbalFor starters, bubbles are always a good idea. One of my favorites is the Veuve Ambal “Marie Ambal Brut Rose” [$24.99]. This wine is a cremant from Burgundy. The majority of the blend is Pinot Noir with a little bit of Chardonnay. The wine is aged for at least 48 months before secondary fermentation in the bottle. The mousse is delicate and steady with aromas of strawberry and it toasts with a crisp and clear finish.
  2. Buoncristiani ChardonnayFor white wine lovers, the choice is not a difficult one. At the pinnacle of domestic Chardonnay sits the 2013 Buoncristiani Chardonnay out of Napa [$39.99]. The fruit is sourced from Hyde, Stagecoach & Pahlmeyer’s Waters Ranch and picked at optimal ripeness, fermented in new (and twice used) French oak followed by 10 months surlie. This wine is focused primarily on fruit, minerality and balanced acidity with secondary flavors of integrated French oak richness framed by a full mid-palate and a lingering finish. You may want to bathe in it, but don’t!  Just sip it—and then hide it!
  3. DurandThe piece de resistance for any and all holidays is without a doubt the 2010 Durand Cornas [$39.50]. It is a steal! Not only was it given a 95 from Robert Parker, it was also the highest rated 2010 Rhone wine reviewed through July 2012. I will leave the review to Wine Spectator:

    Wine Spectator – 94 points. Mouthfilling, with deliciously intense anise, blackberry compote and plum     pate de fruit flavors backed by well-integrated briar and iron notes. The long racy finish has lots of life.      Best from 2013 through 2023. 1,500 cases made. –Jim

The old saying, “It ain’t Christmas till somebody cries,” is a thing of the past. Don’t let turkey get the best of you this holiday season because you are never too far from an ABC Fine Wine & Spirits with knowledgeable consultants ready to put your holiday anxieties to rest and ensure your party’s success. Just remember to always celebrate. Cheers!!

Heather Burton, wine consultant at ABC Fine Wine & Spirits – Winter Park

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