Not only did I want to make a Thanksgiving Guide that would help you make A Traditional Southern Thanksgiving but I also didn’t want to leave out the people that do not cook for Thanksgiving.

What is the one things that will never be turned down and surely appreciate at any gathering? Alcohol. Wine, Liqueur, Spirits… whatever you want to call it. Too little can make the situation tense but too much guarantees things getting a little too loose, if you know what I mean.

What’s the perfect level? Well… Wine. Classier than Beer but less aggressive than Vodka or Hennessy.

I wanted to bring in the best wine expert I know, Sarita Cheaves. Wine writer, Sarita is a DC native with a passion for food and wine. Before she launched her blog, Vine Me Up, she served as a Senior Tasting Room Associate at Black Ankle Vineyards. She has a WSET (Wine Spirits Education Trust) certification and is known for discovering great wines and unique wine pairings. Sarita also has a knack for media and loves to help others discover their lane. She received a production certification and began to produce, The Swirl Suite Podcast. Sarita interviews winemakers, wine writers and wine influencers from all over the country. She is also a native Washingtonian and uses her platform to showcase the diverse range of where to sip, swirl, and eat in the District.

Sarita also cooks bomb food on her instagram (@vinemeup) and has great commentary on most things of popular culture. Sarita and I met at the My Taught You Retreat earlier this year and I fell in love with what she loves, wine. Well honestly I loved wine before her but now I respect it more.

So, no this guide will not be about which Stella Rosa goes great with Chitlins but she will recommend easily acquired wines to pair with my Thanksgiving Guide (You really need to download that!).

Take Notes

Her recommendations are as follows:

Crémant de Burgondie,  $9.99 from Trader Joes

Grapes: grapes: Pinot Noir, Chardonnay, Aligoté and Gamay

It’s always great to welcome guests with bubbles. Crémant is a French Sparkling wine, made just like Champagne. With an elegant body and notes of pear and apple, this wine will pair with your Smoked turkey neck cornbread dressing, slow cooked collard greens and 3 cheese mac.

Tavel Rosé made  $8.99 from Trader Joes

Grapes: from Grenache Noir, Cinsault, Grenache Blanc, Syrah, Carignan

Heavier/darker rosés are perfect for Thanksgiving. This rosé is from Tavel in the Southern Rhone region of France. Tavel is known for its dry rosés. The body of this rosé is going to pair nice with brown sugar baked ham. There is enough acidity match the fat and salt then there is enough fruit to balance with the sugar.

Epicuro Primitivo, Italy $5.99 from Trader Joes

Grapes: Primitivo/Zinfandel

Primitivo is the Italian version of Zinfandel. This wine comes from the Apulia region of Italy. To me this wine essential for Thanksgiving because its a match made in heaven for sweet potatoes.  Primitivo will most likely be fruit forward and will pair nicely with Sweet potato souffle, sweet potato pie or almost anything chocolate. I also use this primitivo or zinfandels to introduce new wine drinkers to red wine.

Beaujolais Villages Nouveau, France, $10-$15 from any wine shop

Grape: Gamay

Beaujolais is a region in France, known for the Gamay grape. Beaujolais Nouveau is a wine celebrated on the 3rd Thursday of November. Its made with carbonic maceration in a large tank without aging. Its fruity with notes of raspberry and rose pedals with high acidity. The body of this wine will pair well with your Cranberry white chocolate bread pudding. This will be a creamy contrast to the acid.

Now you can actually sound like you’re a wine connoisseur! No need to thank me. Actually no, Thank Sarita! You can find her on all social media under the name @vinemeup and also on her podcast The Swirl Suite!