What to Drink Now: Pinot Noir for Thanksgiving

I’m breaking the Thanksgiving wine posts up a bit this year because so many people have a set varietal they love to pour for Thanksgiving, so I’ll have a few posts with turkey day wine options for pairing one varietal or another.  For me, I love Pinot Noir with the Thanksgiving meal.  It is generally not as heavy and weighty as say a Cabernet, has good fruit flavors with earthiness, and pairs well with traditional fall flavors like roasted squash and sweet potatoes, roasted turkey and cranberries.
Some wine selections were sent for editorial consideration.

2008 Stoller JV Estate Pinot Noir – Jeunes Vignes, or Junior Vines, Pinot Noir is made from young vines grown on the Dundee Hills Stoller estate in Willamette Valley with an approachable, lively style.  Ripe raspberry, bing cherry, baking spice and violets with a subtle touch of vanilla on the finish.  An easy to drink wine with a great price tag for Willamette Valley Pinot – around $20 a bottle.  

Evening Land 2009 Seven Springs Estate Pinot Noir – Another Willamette Valley wine I enjoyed the other night with a roasted mushroom salad.  A balanced combination of earthy flavors and bright red fruit like raspberry and strawberry, with touches of Asian spice.  A great food wine, especially with all the flavors on a Thanksgiving table.

2007 Domaine Serene Evanstad Reserve – I have written about this wine before, but if you are looking for a go to Pinot from the Willamette Valley this is one to put into the rotation.  Consistently elegant, distinct and delicious, this is the type of Pinot Noir that Oregon is known for.  Ripe red cherry, strawberry and cranberry with layers of cola, nutmeg and forest floor notes with age worthy tannins and a great finish.

2010 Siduri Russian River Pinot Noir – There is something about Pinot Noir from Russian River that with the first wiff of the aroma you know it is from Russian River. Fruit forward aromas with floral and spice. Russian River wines have great character with lush, fruit flavors.  Siduri’s RR Pinot Noir is filled with red cherry, blackberry and rhubarb with rose petals and spice notes.  A wine that can easily be enjoyed on its own or paired with food.

2008 Gary Farrel Pinot Noir - Also from Russian River, this one has a bit more concentration and weight than the Siduri, but still has that similar aroma of Russian River fruit. Ripe red cherry with blackberry, red plum, cola and sweet baking spices like nutmeg and cinnamon.  Firm tannins with balanced acidity make this a great option for pairing with bold Thanksgiving flavors like fried turkeys, oyster and sausage stuffing and pecan pie.

2009 Cherry Pie Pinot Noir – With a name like “cherry pie” it makes you want to open this any time of year from the 4th of July through the holidays, and aptly enough, it embraces bold cherry fruit flavors without all the sugar of a traditional cherry pie. Made from fruit grown in the Carneros region of Napa Valley at Stanley Ranch, the fruit is really the star of this wine, with blackberry, red cherry and black cherry, pairing well with everything from salads to mains to dessert.

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