• By: Jane Staples

Wines to Put The Happy in Your Thanksgiving Dinner

Many of us celebrate the harvest season with a special dinner in October. It’s relatively easy to choose the main course and fall vegetables to accompany it, but questions often arise about which wine or wines to serve. Here are several options to assist your planning and help you enjoy your meal, from start to finish.

If you’re hosting Thanksgiving dinner, offering your guests a glass of bubbly is a gracious way to start the celebrations. Ontario makes excellent sparkling wine. Henry of Pelham Cuvée Catharine Brut is a top-rated sparkler from the Niagara Peninsula region. It shows brioche, apple and citrus flavours with a fine mousse. Sparkling wine is mouth-watering due to its vibrant acidity, which also makes it refreshing as an appetizer and also very versatile with a variety of types of food.

Dry • 12% LCBO# 217521 • $32.95 • $29.95 til Oct. 8th


If you’re looking to try something new, this crisp, fragrant Torrontés is a refreshing and flavourful white wine that is both floral and fruity. It’s Argentina’s signature white wine. You’ll find notes of citrus, passion fruit, lychee and white flowers, with a lingering finish. It’s very versatile with food; pair it with a smoked salmon appetizer, grilled calamari, crab, white meats or Thai cuisine. Excellent value at this price.

Dry • LCBO VINTAGES# 1834 •  $17.95 • $15.95 til Oct. 8th


Pinot Noir is the classic red wine choice with turkey. There’s so much to savour with this wine; the perfumed nose, the layers of flavours, both fruity and savoury and the long, delicious finish. Its tart cherry flavours and bright acidity balance the richness of the turkey and gravy, and the fruit flavours pair well with cranberry sauce. A tip for the cranberry sauce: if you want to take it up a notch, add a splash of brandy or port for added depth of flavour.

Thomas Bachelder is the highly regarded, internationally recognized founding winemaker at Le Clos Jordanne. Having worked as a winemaking assistant in Burgundy during the nineties, he returned to Canada, where he specializes in producing cool-climate Pinot Noir and Chardonnay. Did you know? The vineyards in Clos Jordanne share similar climate and terroir to Burgundy’s Côte d’Or region. Bachelder originally imported ultra-premium rootstock directly from Burgundy. The grapes for his wines are hand-picked and hand-sorted to ensure the best quality. His wines showcase the beauty of wines produced in Jordan Village.

Dry •  LCBO# 033894 • $29.95


There’s nothing quite like a lush French Chardonnay from Bourgogne. This one will fill your mouth with sumptuous flavours of nuts, citrus, toast, vanilla and herbs. It’s rich enough to pair beautifully with turkey for the white wine lovers at your table.

Dry •  LCBO VINTAGES# 933077 •  $33.95


If that’s a mouthful, just say, “Gewurtz.” That means “spicy” in German. This is a lovely alternative to Chardonnay if you’re serving a spicy condiment or sauce with your turkey. A favourite Gewurtz is Willm Gewurtztraminer Reserve from France’s Alsace region. It’s uniquely fragrant, with delicate rose petal and lychee aromas. The satiny, luscious palate also shows honey and wet stone with hints of nutmeg and ginger. Gewurtz is also a fine match when you’re serving an Indian curry or Vietnamese spring rolls.

Dry • LCBO VINTAGES# 269852 • $21.95


VQA Niagara, Ontario

A celebratory meal calls for a special wine to finish the meal. This richly-flavoured dessert wine is crafted from blackcurrants grown in the Niagara region. It pairs beautifully with a fruit tart, or for a special dessert that’s easy to prepare, pour it over lemon gelato. Or for a Canadian Kir Royale, mix it with your favourite VQA bubbly. This is a new release from Southbrook and it’s bound to become a favourite.

Sweet • LCBO VINTAGES# 339044 • 375 ml • $22.95

For more wine and food discovery from Jane Staples, visit www.bellovinoj.com

Header Photo: Dana Gallagher