Today is year’s biggest wine sales day at your wine store.
America pours wine tomorrow. Christmastime and New Year’s compete, but Thanksgiving is king.
Which presents many strategies for wine imbibers and Thanksgiving hosts:
• Go big. Buy that $100-plus bottle of Washington/Oregon/Russian River pinot noir. Buy several. Show-up your parsimonious brother-in-law. As bonus, pinot will be perfect with turkey.
• Be Mr. Responsible. Buy quality pinots from Washington/Oregon/Sonoma/New Zealand that cost between $20 and $50. Show family you are not foolish enough to squander savings to show off, like your prodigal brother-in-law.
• Be the “I vacationed in France” person. Pour a hard-to-find Burgundy (pinot noir) to show your idiot in-laws you value moderation and quality over pathetic, showy one-upmanship, thus winning the pathetic, showy one-upmanship fight.
• Be the “I studied a semester in Germany” person. Pour Mosel dry riesling. Riesling is not treacly sweet plonk you foolishly favored in your callow youth; it is one of earth’s great grapes when dry or semi-dry. Extra credit if you pronounce winery with Prussian perfection. Or even get close.
• Be cool. Buy any bottle you please because it pleases you and fits your budget. There are so many food courses, flavors, family at a big Thanksgiving meal, whatever you like probably will pair with something or someone. But, get going. The wine shop is crowded today.
• Fire Road Marlborough Pinot Noir 2013. Red cherry, red plum, currant; nice acidity balances slightly candified fruit; light, easy drinker. $20
• Cummins Road Yamhill-Carlton Pinot Noir 2011. Fresh, light, lively cherry, red plum; delicate frame, finesse finish; Texas boys go to Oregon and make winner. $25
• Elk Cove Vineyards Pinot Noir Willamette Valley 2012. Dark cherries, plum, coffee, chocolate; soft tannin, light body, gentle pleaser. $29
• Carlotta Cellars Honor Pinot Noir 2012. Elegant, classic Sonoma pinot; cherry, strawberry, vanilla, raspberry, pinch of plum, hint of oak. $51
Last round: If wine, women, and song become too much for you, give up singing.
Email Gus at firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow tasting notes on Twitter @gusclemens. Facebook: Gus Clemens on Wine.