14 Wines for Thanksgiving Dinner

14 Wines for Thanksgiving Dinner – Here are mix of sparkling, rosé, white, and red wine options that would be a wonderful addition to any Thanksgiving Day feast. Plus, 10 of these Thanksgiving wine pairing options are $20 or less, so there is no need to worry about spending a fortune for good wine. Cheers…and Happy Thanksgiving! | AGlassAfterWork.com

14 Wines for Thanksgiving Dinner – Here are mix of sparkling, rosé, white, and red wine options that would be a wonderful addition to any Thanksgiving Day feast. Plus, 10 of these Thanksgiving wine pairing options are $20 or less, so there is no need to worry about spending a fortune for good wine. Cheers…and Happy Thanksgiving! | AGlassAfterWork.com

It’s hard to believe that it’s Thanksgiving time.  Hubby and I are running the SOME Turkey Trot for Hunger 5k before we head to his mother’s, as we usually do.  While there is a lot to be thankful, our holiday festivities will be a lot smaller than previous years.  My sister-in-law moved to the West Coast, so she and her boyfriend won’t be joining.  Hubby’s cousin recently had a baby and decided to host, which means we’ll be missing both his cousin, her husband, and their baby girl, as well as her parents.  And, his grandmother passed away at the end of the summer, so there will be an obvious absence at the table.  Except for his grandmother’s passing, the smaller holiday is actually because of happy reasons, and I’m excited to see our families expand and be successful.  At the same time, though, I will miss the hustle and bustle of the larger dinners that I’ve gotten used to over the years.

That said, smaller numbers means more wine for me!  I’m still debating between a Zinfandel and a Petit Sirah as my big red wine of choice.  If you’re still trying to figure out what to bring, maybe this list of suggestions will inspire you:

Gruet Blanc de Noirs – This $13 bottle of sparkling wine from New Mexico is dry with beautiful, persistent bubbles. The bubbly tastes of berries, baked pears with hints of toast, cream, and vanilla. It’s delicious on its own or mixed with your favorite fruit juice for a champagne cocktail. Rating 4 out 5. Cheers! | AGlassAfterWork.com

Gruet Blanc de Noirs

The Gruet Blanc de Noirs is full of berry and baked pear flavors mixed with a hint of toast, cream, and vanilla.  It’s a sparkling wine that I’m constantly recommending because it’s available throughout much of the country, is a big crowd pleaser, and is very affordable. In this case, though, it’s a particularly nice choice because it pairs will with Thanksgiving dinner. It compliments the turkey, while the bubbles and acidity cut through some of the heavier dishes like the mashed potatoes or green bean casserole. Plus, how often do you get to drink a wine from New Mexico?!? I gave this wine 4 corks and purchased it for $13.

Biutiful Brut Rosé Cava – At $14 a bottle, this sparkling rose wine from Spain is perfect for any season. Whether it’s opened during a summer picnic with friends over a basket of prosciutto and cheese or during a Thanksgiving feast with family, this food-friendly bubbly is easily drinkable and is full of festivity and fun. Ratings 3.5 out of 5 | AGlassAfterWork.com

Biutiful Brut Rosé Cava

The Biutiful Cava Brut Rosé (snooth) is a Spanish sparkling wine from Spain with tart raspberries and strawberries characteristics that mix with hints of peaches and cream. The wine had a light-to-medium body, has good acidity, and goes down very smoothly. It would go nicely with appetizers like a crab or spinach dip, as well prosciutto and cheese plates, while being able to transition nicely into a dinner time sparkler to pair with the turkey dinner, particularly if you’re having fried turkey. All in all,  this rose Cava is easily drinkable, food-friendly, and very affordable. I gave this wine 3.5 corks and purchased it for $14.

Storybook Mountain Zin Gris- At $25, this dry rosé wine from California is everything a pink wine should be. It’s a nice mixture of cranberries, limes, and thyme; it’s food-friendly; and it’s easy to drink. It would be the perfect wine for any picnic or cookout. Rating: 4.5 Corks out 5 | AGlassAfterWork.com

Storybook Mountain Zin Gris

The Storybook Mountain Vineyards Zin Gris (winery) is Zinfandel rosé that is not a “White Zinfandel.” It’s a dry wine that’s full of cranberry, lime, and thyme flavors, which will mix nicely with the traditional Thanksgiving dinner side dishes like stuffing and cranberry sauce. Plus, the bright acidity of the wine will help cut through some of the more butter-laden goodness like macaroni and cheese or mashed potatoes without overpowering them. I gave this wine 4.5 corks and purchased it online through the vineyard for $19.

2015 Klinker Brick Winery Rosé – At $15, this California rosé wine is a perfect summer porch sipper with a nice quality/price ratio. Rating: 4 out 5 | AGlassAfterWork.com

2015 Klinker Brick Winery Rosé

The 2015 Klinker Brick Winery Rosé (winerysnooth) is a light bodied wine that is beautifully fresh tasting, with lots of grapefruit characteristics mixed with hints of tart raspberry and flowers. This wine is an easy sipper that would compliment both appetizers and the main feast, particularly for the wine drinker that prefers lighter, crisp styles. I gave this wine 4 corks and tasted it the winery during the 2016 Wine Bloggers’ Conference. It has a great quality/price ratio with an SRP of $15.

2015 Vasco Urbano Wine Company – At $24, this California rose from the Livermore Valley is light bodied and nicely balanced. It’s perfect for a cheese board or some porch sipping, and it will carry over nicely into the fall. You might even want to consider it for your Thanksgiving table. Rating 4.5 out of 5 | AGlassAfterWork.com

2015 Vasco Urbano Wine Company Grenache Rose

The Vasco Urbano Wine Company’s 2015 Ghielmetti Vineyards Grenache Rosé (winery) has quickly become one of my favorites. It’s light body, bright acidity, and beautiful balance makes it a wine that is enjoyable both on its own and with food. It’s a particularly nice option for Thanksgiving because it will compliment the turkey, while keeping your mouth fresh and ready for the next bite. I gave it 4.5 corks and tasted it the winery during the 2016 Wine Bloggers’ Conference. It has an SRP of $24.

2014 Chateau St. Michelle Cold Creek Riesling – At $20, this white wine from Washington state would be the perfect wine for a summer salad, cold chicken, or just to sip on with good friends and conversation. Rating: 4 out of 5 | AGlassAfterWork.com

2014 Chateau St. Michelle Cold Creek Riesling

The 2014 Chateau Ste. Michelle Cold Creek Riesling (winery)has the slightest touch of sweetness, but when combined with a nice acidity, the wine is refreshing and incredibly drinkable. The wine has aromas and flavors of ripe peaches and apricots mixed with honey and a hint of ginger., which will bring warmth to the turkey dinner and all it’s dishes. The wine would be particularly nice with a fried turkey. I gave this wine 4 Corks and purchased it for $20.

2014 Clarksburg Chenin Blanc – This $18 white wine from California would be good any time of year and is absolutely wonderful on its own, but makes a particularly delicious addition to a Thanksgiving feast. It’s the epitome of what every Thanksgiving Dinner pairing should be! The magnetic wine charm is by Simply Charmed and part of the “Tom Turkey” set. Rating 4.5 out of 5 | AGlassAfterWork.com

2014 Clarksburg Wine Company Chenin Blanc and Simply Charmed magnetic wine charms

The 2014 Clarksburg Chenin Blanc (winery) is everything I want in a Thanksgiving Day wine. I’m actually sorry that I opened my final bottle last week because it means I won’t have another to open when Hubby and I do our own Thanksgiving. That said, I did enjoy my bottle with turkey-stuffed acorn squash, and the pairing was out-of-this-world. The juicy stone fruit combined with hints of melon and wax enhanced the sweetness of the squash, while nice acidity of the wine helped keep the turkey and rice mixture inside the squash from being too heavy and dense tasting. It was the type of pairing where I was literally alternating between a bit of dinner and a sip of wine. So grab this wine today! I gave this wine 4.5 corks and purchased it for $18.

(And as a side note, while I’ll be doing a separate blog post that will include a giveaway to one lucky reader, if you’re looking for fun, magnetic wine charms to help with glass identification when you’re entertaining or if you’re just feeling festive and want to fancy-up your wine glass, I highly recommend Simply Charmed. My glass of Chenin Blanc is rocking one from the “Tom Turkey” charm set that I received as a sample.)

2014 Concannon Vineyard Chardonnay – At $18, this California white wine is very smooth and is a perfect food wine. Rating: 3.5 out 5 | AGlassAfterWork.com

2014 Concannon Vineyard Chardonnay

The 2014 Concannon Vineyard Chardonnay (winerysnooth) is a smooth, food-friendly wine that embodies the nice balance a Chardonnay should have. It’s full of apple and pear flavors, but only has a touch of oakiness that is reminiscent of chewed on Popsicle stick (but in a good way). People often love or hate Chardonnay, but I would say that regardless of which category you fall into, this is one that is worth trying this Thanksgiving, especially as it will be a nice pairing with buttery mashed potatoes and gravy. I gave it 3.5 corks and tasted it the winery during the 2016 Wine Bloggers’ Conference. It has an SRP of $18.

2014 The Whip– At $24, this white wine blend from California will blow you away. It’s nicely balanced, easy to drink, and is a perfect pairing option for appetizers, dinner, or just talking with friends and family. Rating: 4 out of 5 | AGlassAfterWork.com

2014 The Whip

Murrieta’s Well 2014 The Whip (winery) is a gorgeous blend of grapes. This is a wine that will blow away your Thanksgiving Day guests as it’s a nicely balanced, easy-to-drink wine that has a tart citrus flavor mixed with a hint of creamy sweetness that is unique, but homey all at the same time. The wine is full of flower blossoms, limes, stone and tropical fruits, and honey dew melon and would be a great way to start off the festivities. I gave it 4 corks and tasted it the winery during the 2016 Wine Bloggers’ Conference. It has an SRP of $24.

Albinea Canali Lambrusco “FB” Metodo Ancestrale -- This $20 bottle of sparkling wine from Italy is a dry wine, although the strawberry flavors are juicy and sweet. It would make a perfect pairing with Easter ham or Thanksgiving turkey. Rating 4 out of 5. Cheers! | AGlassAfterWork.com

Albinea Canali Lambrusco “FB” Metodo Ancestrale

The Albinea Canali Lambrusco “FB” Metodo Ancestrale is a semi-sparkling, dry Lambrusco with a medium pink color rather than the sweeter, inky purple wine people often associate with Lambrusco. The “FB” has juicy strawberry flavors mixed with hints of bread crust and touch of tartness that will make a nice pairing with turkey. I gave it 4 corks, and while I received it as a sample, the suggested retail price is $20.

2016 Domaine des Terres Dorées “L’Ancien” Vieilles Vignes Beaujolais Nouveau – At $16, this light-bodied red wine from France is a food-friendly wine that will please almost every wine drinker. So, as you’re starting to think about holiday parties and dinners, this is one to keep in mind. Rating 4 out of 5 | AGlassAfterWork.com

2016 Domaine des Terres Dorées “L’Ancien” Vieilles Vignes Beaujolais Nouveau

No Thanksgiving celebration is complete without at least one bottle of Beaujolais Nouveau. I haven’t had a chance to open my bottle of Georges Duboeuf yet, but I did taste the 2016 Domaine des Terres Dorées “L’Ancien” Vieilles Vignes Beaujolais Nouveau and was a fan. A nose full of strawberries and cream mixed with hints of late bloom rose petals. In the mouth, there are tart strawberries and raspberries, as well as hints of cranberries and roses. The wine is light bodied with light tannins and a good acidity that makes it food friendly and gives surprising structure to a wine that is so young. It also makes we want to try the winery’s regular Beaujolais, which I’m sure would also make for a nice addition to the Thanksgiving table. I gave this wine 4 corks and purchased it for $16.

2015 Altovinum Evodia Garnacha - This red wine from Spain can be found for under $10, but your guests will never guess because it is a luscious, versatile wine. Whether opening it over appetizers, a dinner of white or red meat, or just open a bottle in front of a cozy fire with friends, it’s hard to beat this quality price ratio. Rating: 4 out of 5. | AGlassAfterWork.com

2015 Altovinum Evodia Garnacha

The 2015 Altovinum Evodia Garnacha is one of the more versatile wines I’ve had, as I think it would pair nicely with white or red meat. In the case of Thanksgiving, the cherry, raspberry, and cranberry characteristics blend nicely with cinnamon, rose petals and hints of tobacco to make a wine that is exactly what you want to pair with turkey and cranberry sauce. It’s also a wine that has a wonderful quality/price ratio. I gave it 4 corks, and while I received it as a sample, the suggested retail price is $11, but a little research makes it look like you can find it for under $10.

2013 Valle Dell'Acate "Il Moro" Nero d'Avola - This $17 red wine from Italy is a little sharp to drink on its own, but it pairs beautifully with some homemade Italian cooking or a traditional Thanksgiving dinner. Rating: 3.5 out 5 | AGlassAfterWork.com

2013 Valle Dell’Acate “Il Moro” Nero d’Avola

The 2013 Valle Dell’Acate Il Moro Nero d’Avola (winery) is a wine that was definitely meant to pair with food. While I was not as much of a fan of drinking it on its own, it was absolutely outstanding with the turkey-stuffed acorn squash that Hubby made for dinner last week. The nice tart blackberries and licorice mix with hints of blueberries and cedar in a way that would be a perfect pairing for sweet potato casserole. I gave this wine 3.5 corks, and while I received it as a sample, the suggested retail price is $17.

2012 Valletta Barbera d'Alba - This $25 bottle of red wine from Italy is delicate and intense, making it perfect for Easter or Thanksgiving dinner, particularly if you’re serving lamb or turkey. Rating 4.5 out of 5. | AGlassAfterWork.com

2012 Valletta Barbera d’Alba

The 2012 Valletta Barbera d’Alba (winery) is a red wine I open in my house regularly, as it’s seductive and food-friendly without being overly expensive. It’s a deep ruby color with flecks of garnet that I love looking at in my glass. And, the cherry and plum notes mix with an earthiness and something toasty to make a medium-to-full bodied wine with velvety tannins that just scream to be paired with a Thanksgiving dinner. I gave it 4.5 corks and purchased it for $25.

2014 Portalupi Dolinsek Ranch Old Vine Zinfandel – This $48 red wine from California lingers in the mouth, get more and more flavorful as time passes. It’s a wine meant for enjoying over a leisurely feast with family and friends. Rating: 4.5 out of 5. | AGlassAfterWork.com

2014 Portalupi Dolinsek Ranch Old Vine Zinfandel

Drinking Zinfandel with a Thanksgiving dinner is like eating peanut butter with jelly…the two are practically made to go together. And, the 2014 Portalupi Dolinsek Ranch Old Vine Zinfandel (winery) is a particularly good option because the medium-bodied wine is full of blackberry, raspberry, and cranberry flavors that hint at pine trees and baking spices. What’s particularly wonderful about the wine is it lingers in the mouth, get more and more flavorful. This Zinfandel will help bring out the deep flavors in the turkey (especially if you’re a dark meat lover), as well as in side dishes like the sweet potato casserole. It’s perfect for eating a leisurely feast with family and friends. I gave it 4.5 stars, and while I received this wine as a present, it looks like it sells for about $48.

Question of the Day:  Have you picked our your Thanksgiving wines?  What are you planning to serve?

5 American Sparkling & Rosé Wines for July 4

5 American Sparkling and Rosé Wines for July 4 – July 4 cookouts are mean lots of good food, friends, and alcohol, but finding a sparkling or rose wine that fits a BBQ atmosphere can be difficult. These 5 wines are perfect options, and they’re all under $25. Cheers! | AGlassAfterWork.com

5 American Sparkling and Rosé Wines for July 4 – July 4 cookouts are mean lots of good food, friends, and alcohol, but finding a sparkling or rose wine that fits a BBQ atmosphere can be difficult. These 5 wines are perfect options, and they’re all under $25. Cheers! | AGlassAfterWork.com

I can’t believe there is only a week to go until July 4th, but that means it’s time to make final wine preparations.  As long time readers know, I will often open sparkling wine for myself on Independence Day because bubbly and fireworks just go together.  And, as I’ve definitely become more of a rosé drinker over the last few years, I can’t deny that I’ve started to associate summer with drinking pink wine.  So, to kick off my week of Fourth of July wine recommendations, here are some sparkling and rosé wines from the United States that you should consider.  All of them are under $25 and delicious!

Gruet Blanc de Noirs – This $13 bottle of sparkling wine from New Mexico is dry with beautiful, persistent bubbles. The bubbly tastes of berries, baked pears with hints of toast, cream, and vanilla. It’s delicious on its own or mixed with your favorite fruit juice for a champagne cocktail. Rating 4 out 5. Cheers! | AGlassAfterWork.com

Gruet Blanc de Noirs

The Gruet Blanc de Noirs is full of berry and baked pear flavors mixed with a hint of toast, cream, and vanilla.  The sparkler has nice acidity, which would make it a good pairing with both potato salad and hot dogs.  Plus, the price is perfect for buying multiple bottles without breaking the bank. I gave this wine 4 corks and purchased it for $13.

Mumm Napa Brut Rosé - At $24, this rose sparkling wine is light bodied, full of flavor, and easy to drink. It also comes in large formats, so it’s a perfect option for a summer cookout, New Year’s Eve party, or big family brunch. Rating: 4.5 Corks out 5 | AGlassAfterWork.com

Mumm Napa Brut Rosé

The Mumm Napa Brut Rosé tastes of cherries, strawberries, plums, and hints of whipped cream and yeast.  It has a light body and is very easy to drink (maybe a little too easy).  This bubbly also comes in large formats, so if you know that 750ml isn’t going to be enough, you can purchase a 3 liter or 6 liter bottle.  I gave this wine 4 corks and purchased the 750ml bottle for $19.20 (as a wine club member.  Regular price is $24).

Barefoot Perfectly Pink Spritzer- At $7, this sweet, rosé wine spritzer is easy to drink and very refreshing. One serving is also only 180 calories, but still is full of flavor. It would be great to enjoy at a cookout or during an summer evening with girlfriends. Rating: 3.5 Corks out 5 | AGlassAfterWork.com

Barefoot Perfectly Pink Spritzer

The Barefoot Perfectly Pink Spritzer surprised me…I admit it.  It’s all about ripe strawberries and raspberries mixed with juicy pineapple and hints of pink grapefruit.  It’s light-bodied, sweet, easy to drink, and very refreshing.  The acidity and spritz keeps the sweetness in check.  The key to this wine, though, is keeping it cold, so don’t be afraid to add an ice cube or two.  I definitely didn’t enjoy it as much as it warmed up.  I gave this wine 3.5 corks, and while I received it as a sample, the SRP is $7.

Storybook Mountain Zin Gris- At $25, this dry rosé wine from California is everything a pink wine should be. It’s a nice mixture of cranberries, limes, and thyme; it’s food-friendly; and it’s easy to drink. It would be the perfect wine for any picnic or cookout. Rating: 4.5 Corks out 5 | AGlassAfterWork.com

Storybook Mountain Zin Gris

The Storybook Mountain Zin Gris is my “house rosé.”  I haven’t done a separate review of it in a while, so I clearly need to, particularly as I drink it at home regularly.  It’s a nice mixture of cranberries, limes, and thyme, which creates something a little different in a rosé.  This wine is dry and is as enjoyable with food as without it.  I gave this wine 4.5 corks and purchased it for $22.50 (as a wine club member.  Regular price is $25).

2015 Mark Ryan Winery "The Vincent" Rosé - At $15, this dry rosé wine from Washington State is affordable, food-friendly, and very drinkable. Whether it’s a small gathering, a big cookout, or a romantic dinner, this wine would fit the mood without costing a fortune. Rating: 4.5 Corks out 5 | AGlassAfterWork.com

2015 Mark Ryan Winery “The Vincent” Rosé

The Mark Ryan Winery “The Vincent” Rosé is a perfect picnic or cookout wine.  There were fresh strawberries mixed with rose petals and lemon zest.  It’s a lighter bodied wine that still packs a powerful flavor punch without being overwhelming.  I only discovered this wine in May, but I suspect it will join the Storybook Mountain Zin Gris as a A Glass After Work house wine.  I gave this wine 4.5 corks and purchased it for $15.

Question of the Day:  Do you have your plans all set for the upcoming Canada Day or July 4th holiday weekend?  

Top 5 White, Rosé, & Sparkling Wine for Thanksgiving 2013

Yesterday, I posted my top 5 red wine suggestions for Thanksgiving.  Today’s post is all about the white, rosé, and sparkling wine suggestions.  Since wine is usually the backdrop of a holiday meal, and everyone around the table is likely to have very different palates, I tried to provide suggestions that can meet both the sweet and the dry wine lovers preferences.  That said, in order to make sure the wines don’t overpower the meal and keep everything tasting fresh, my suggestions are all wines a lighter body, are unoaked, and have bright acidity.  Enjoy!

 

2010 Michel-Schlumberger La Bise Pinot Blanc

2010 Michel-Schlumberger La Bise Pinot Blanc

The 2010 Michel-Schlumberger La Bise Pinot Blanc (winery) was the white wine I chose for the post-Thanksgiving dinner Hubby and I did for ourselves last year.  It’s a white wine from California, and it had wonderful grapefruit and lime characteristics that were followed by hints of white flowers, grass, honey, and jasmine.  It was a delicious accompaniment to the meal, but was particularly good with Hubby’s pesto mashed potatoes.  I gave this wine 4.5 corks and purchased it for $24.

 

2009 Buried Cane Chardonnay

2009 Buried Cane Chardonnay

The 2009 Buried Cane Chardonnay (winery) is a no-oak Chardonnay that is very food-friendly.  The wine tasted of limes, granny smith apples, and pears, with the slightest hint of lemon custard. The wine has a light-to-medium body and a bright acidity that will go nicely with the turkey without overpowering it.  And, if some reason you manage not to finish the bottle (although I will be very surprised if that happens), the wine holds up nicely over a couple of days.  I gave the Burried Cane Chardonnay 4.5 corks and received it as a sample, but the suggested retail price is $14.

 

2011 Sawtooth Riesling

2011 Sawtooth Riesling

The 2011 Sawtooth Rielsing (winery) is probably the wine that I will bring to my in-laws, as my mother-and-sister-in-law both prefer wines with a hint of sweetness.  The wine tastes of peaches, Lemonheads candy, honey, and flowers with a hint of minerality.  What is great about this Riesling, though, is that it isn’t overly sweet and the acidity is bright.  So, even if you tend to prefer dry whites, you should give this wine a try.  I gave this wine 4 corks and purchased it for $10. (I will have a review of this vintage posted in the next couple of weeks, but here is my review of the 2010 vintage)

 

2012 Storybook Mountain Vineyards Zin Gris

2012 Storybook Mountain Vineyards Zin Gris

The Storybook Mountain Vineyards Zin Gris (winery) has nice flavors and good acidity, which will help keep the Thanksgiving meal fresh tasting, particularly when it comes to the butter-laden mashed potatoes and sweet potato casseroles.  The flavors, though, are will also help incorporated other dishes on the table, as the wine is full of nice mixture of cranberries, limes, and thyme.  This wine will be a great accompaniment without overpowering the food.  I gave it 4.5 corks and purchased it online through the vineyard for $19.

 

Gruet Blanc de Noirs

Gruet Blanc de Noirs

The Gruet Blanc de Noirs (winery) a bubble that is made with 75% Pinot Noir and 25% Chardonnay grapes.  It’s full of berries, baked pears and hints of toast, cream, and vanilla.  The small, persistent bubbles, light body, and bright acidity will help keep your palate fresh as during the meal, as well as work as a nice digestive while you’re sitting around talking afterwards.  I gave this wine 4 corks and purchased it for $13. (I will have a full review posted in the next couple of weeks.)

(I didn’t post a Thanksgiving list last year, but here are my 2011 red wine and white wine recommendations)

Question of the Day:  Are you thinking about a bubbly or a rose for your Thanksgiving dinner or are you more likely to stick with red and white wines? 

Top 5 American White Wines & Sparklers for July 4th

Yesterday I shared 5 American red wines to bring to a Fourth of July barbecue or cookout.  A lot of people don’t like drinking red wines in the summer heat, though.  Plus, there is something about sitting outside on a summer evening with a glass of crisp, white wine that just screams summer vacation, even if I’m not really on vacation.  Therefore, as you’re putting together your final shopping list for tomorrow’s July 4th party, here are some American white and sparkling wines to consider:

2009 Fess Parker Viognier

2009 Fess Parker Viognier

The 2009 Fess Parker Viognier (winery) is actually a blend of 80% Viognier, 13% Marsanne, 5% Grenache Blanc, and 2% Roussanne grapes, and while you know my recent confession that I don’t tend to be a Viognier fan, this wine is definitely an exception.  The mix of tropical fruits—honeydew, pineapple, and champagne mangos—with hints of butter, vanilla, and wet stones makes for a delicious wine.  I made an avocado chimichurri bruschetta that I found on Pintrest for last Saturday’s get together with the Wine Ladies, and I think it would not only be good addition to a July 4th party, but also would pair nicely with this wine.  I gave it 4.5 corks and purchased it for $18.

2009 Francis Ford Coppola Diamond Collection Black Label Pavillion

2009 Francis Ford Coppola Diamond Collection Black Label Pavillion

The Francis Ford Coppola Diamond Collection Black Label Pavilion (winery) is a blend of 96% Chardonnay and 4% Viognier grapes and is a more full-bodied white.  It has a nice mix of citrus—mostly grapefruits and limes—and nectarines, with touches of pears, passion fruit, vanilla, and ginger.  It’s wine that was made to enjoy with food and will go nicely with some of the cold salads that often are served as side dishes at a cookout.  I gave this wine 4 corks, and while I received it as a sample, the suggested retail price is $17.

2010 Sawtooth Winery Riesling

The Sawtooth Winery Riesling (winery) is an incredibly affordable Riesling from Idaho.  It’s full of stone fruit characteristics, which are mixed with Lemonheads candies, white flowers, honey, and a nice minerality.  While it has a touch of sweetness, the bright acidity and little bit of spritz in this wine make it very refreshing, particularly in the hot summer weather.  My one word of caution is that it is so light and enjoyable, you may forget that you’re drinking alcohol!  I gave this wine 4 corks and purchased it for $10.

Mumm Napa Brut Prestige

Mumm Napa Brut Prestige

The Mumm Napa Brut Prestige (winerysnooth) is a sparkling wine that has a lot of sparkle.  It surprised me a little with its floweriness, but I enjoyed the way it mixed with the cream, limes, nectarines, and toast.  It had a bright acidity and was actually the sparkler I drank while watching fireworks on our roof deck last Fourth of July.  I gave this bubbly 4.5 corks and purchased it for $20.

Gruet Brut

Gruet Brut

The Gruet Brut (winery) is an affordable sparkling wine from New Mexico that would be a fabulous addition to a July 4th cookout.  It’s full of limes, granny smith apples, and toast with a nice acidity that keeps the sparkler fresh without making it too biting.  I gave this bubbly 4 corks and purchased it for $14.

Question of the Day: What are your plans for July 4th

Fate in a Bottle of New Mexico Bubbly (Wine Blogging Wednesday #74)

Sometimes finding a wine is all about fate.

My first post this year was about my wine plans for 2012, and I mentioned that I wanted to “drink and review at least two bottles of sparkling wine a month because bubbly is fun and brings such happiness into life.”  Craig with Two Guys from Napa suggested I find a bottle of Gruet, saying it was an impressive sparkling wine, particularly at that price point.  I was intrigued and put the sparkler on my “to try” list.

Gruet Brut

Gruet Brut

Then, as I was catching up on Facebook after being in Jamaica for the week, I saw that Dezel from My Vine Spot posted good things about the Gruet rose.  This second mention was definitely enough to raise my eyebrows even higher and pique my interest even further.

As if the two blogger recommendations weren’t enough to convince me to try the bubbly, though, two non-wine friends who don’t know each other mentioned Gruet’s sparkling wine separately as a must try.  To have the wine suggested four times in less than a month meant I had to immediately grab a bottle of New Mexico’s finest bubbly.

The Gruet Brut (winery) was a medium golden yellow with a lot of small, persistent bubbles.  On the nose there were limes and toast.  In the mouth, there were limes, granny smith apples, and toast.  The wine had good acidity and a medium body.

Is this worth a glass after work? Definitely!  If you see this wine in the store, grab it; you won’t be disappointed.  At $14, this sparkling wine lived up to all the hype…so run, don’t walk, to the store to buy a bottle.  It was simple, elegant, and refreshing.  Hubby made turkey curry and couscous for dinner, which wasn’t the best pairing because the bubbles increased the dish’s spiciness, but I think with a different pairing, it would be a food-friendly bubbly.  All in all, I spent Saturday evening knitting and enjoying this bubbly, and I see more bottles of Gruet in my future.

***This month’s Wine Blogging Wednesday (WBW #74) theme is value sparkling wine.  The challenge was to pick a sparkling wine from any appellation, made from any grape, that sells for $25 or less a bottle (€20, £16).  Special thanks to Winecast for hosting!*** 

Price: $14
Purchased at Whole Foods Market
Overall: 4 Corks