Thanksgiving is just around the corner—time to brush up on turkey-roasting skills and haul out the fancy place settings. To help you get going on your holiday meal planning, we've put together a collection of turkey recipes, along with two variations on a wine-based gravy, plus a hearty stuffing and some simple but satisfying vegetable dishes. (Stay tuned for Part 2, in which we share lots of great Thanksgiving dessert recipes.)
And of course, there's the question of what to drink with the traditional holiday meal. White or red? Full-bodied or light? And, on this most American of holidays, domestic or foreign? Wine Spectator editor at large Harvey Steiman has weighed in on the issue in previous years, as has chef Charlie Palmer, who pairs an East Coast / West Coast Thanksgiving menu with wines from California and Europe. We've also provided a list of recently rated reds from southwest France that should work well with your roasted bird and hearty side dishes. (In Part 2, we'll share some whites and a dessert wine from the same region.)
So if you're in charge of the food on the Thanksgiving table, you'll want to look through the following recipes:
• Basic Stuffed Roasted Turkey
• Herbed Pancetta and Chestnut Stuffing
• Port Wine Gravy
• Red Wine Gravy
• Roasted Turkey Breast
• Turkey Thighs in Red Wine Garlic Sauce
• Herbed Green Beans
• Mashed Potatoes
Meanwhile, if you're responsible for choosing Thanksgiving wines, have a look at this list. And be sure to check back on Monday for white wines, a dessert wine and some great dessert recipes.
|MONTUS BOUSCASSÉ Madiran Château Montus 2003||91||$23|
|A ripe, heady aroma, with concentrated flavors of dark plum, cassis, mocha and chocolate. There are plenty of tannins, which are balanced out by an ironclad structure and a long, long finish filled with spice and smoke. Best from 2008 through 2015. 13,500 cases made.
|CHÂTEAU PEYROS Madiran Magenta 2004||88||$10|
|Firm and muscular, with concentrated red plum, mineral and cassis flavors and dried cherry notes. The long, pure-tasting finish echoes the fruit and also features plenty of tannins. Drink now through 2012. 2,000 cases made.
|CHÂTEAU TOUR DES GENDRES Côtes de Bergerac La Gloire de Mon Père 2005||88||$21|
|An inky, concentrated red, with intense flavors of dark plum, kirsch and blackberry. The spicy, tannic finish is filled with dark chocolate and smoke. Drink now through 2012. 3,500 cases made.
|GEORGES VIGOUROUX Cahors Château de Haute-Serre 2002||88||$19|
|Shows damson plum and raspberry flavors followed by concentrated notes of mineral and dark chocolate. The long, pure finish is fresh-tasting. Drink now through 2012. 30,000 cases made.
|GEORGES VIGOUROUX Cahors Gouleyant 2005||87||$11|
|A full-bodied red that's backed up by muscular tannins and acidity. Has plenty of dark plum flavors, with dusty notes. Finishes with espresso roast. Drink now through 2012. 20,000 cases made.
|MONTUS BOUSCASSÉ Vin de Pays des Côtes de Gascogne Les Menhirs 2003||87||$29|
|Has a ripe, meaty aroma, with dense flavors of dark plum, blackberry and kirsch. The sanguine finish shows mineral and spice, with plenty of tannins and tobacco notes. Drink now through 2012. 2,500 cases made.
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