The holiday season is upon us, and while Thanksgiving is going to look a bit different this year, there is one thing that remains: great wine on the dinner table. Now more than ever, it is critical to support local wineries and pair your Thanksgiving feast with vino crafted by our fellow community members. In addition to the restrictions posed on wineries because of Covid, California is also coming off the tails of a historic fire season that once again affected Sonoma County. Please remember that every dollar spent on local wine supports our industry and the families that are committed to keeping our wine region thriving and our glasses full of holiday cheer.
It is with great pleasure that I recommend inviting the Beldens to your Thanksgiving table. Belden Barns is located on the iconic Sonoma Mountain and has a long history of farming and hospitality that dates back to the 1800s. The incredible estate is home to an interconnected and flourishing ecosystem of fruits, vegetables and vineyards, and they have their sights on bringing livestock to the land soon. Throughout the year, the family harvests produce from their bountiful farm to package farmstead goods, such as polenta, popcorn, and a variety of beans. And their estate vines craft a collection of palate-pleasing wines that features unique and classic varietals.
Grüner Veltliner and Grenache are two varietals not commonly grown in Sonoma County, but the terroir of the Belden Barns Estate vineyard on Sonoma Mountain produces lovely expressions of these grapes. And in fact, Belden Barns’ 2018 Estate Grüner Veltliner is the first and only estate Grüner Veltliner in Sonoma County, making this wine a rare treat. Pair this exclusive wine with turkey day hors d'oeuvres like Root Vegetable Crostini.
For a more classic approach, look no further than the 2019 Estate Sauvignon Blanc and 2017 Serendipity Pinot Noir for quintessential Thanksgiving pairings. While it’s hard to resist finishing a bottle of Sauvignon Blanc pre-meal, I recommend saving enough for dinner as well—or better yet, grab two bottles so that there is plenty to go around.
The 2019 Estate Sauvignon Blanc from Belden Barns boasts a juicy, opulent palate with ripe tropical fruit like pineapple and lychee. Made in a rich but very balanced style, this wine is loaded with texture and complexity, making it a playful pick for Thanksgiving mains like turkey, mashed potatoes, and green beans. Are you still looking for your ideal turkey recipe? My family loves the Perfect Roast Turkey 101 recipe from Martha Stewart.
The 2017 Serendipity Pinot Noir is made naturally and with a Burgundian flare. A who’s who of Pinot clones (including, Swan, Pommard, Calera, and more) makes up this small lot wine of only 335 cases. This Pinot Noir possesses mixed fruit flavors with a broody earthiness that reminds me of aged Burgundy. Black cherry, cranberry, and wild strawberry balanced with black tea, cardamom, and forest floor make this a sophisticated Pinot fit for turkey, homemade stuffing with deep flavor (see recipe below), and pumpkin pie.
So, don’t forget—even though we may not be gathering with family or friends this Thanksgiving, we can still support our local community and spread the love. Make Sonoma County wines the centerpiece of your Thanksgiving dinner this year.
Homemade Stovetop Stuffing
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