Wine Pairings for Every Holiday Meal

People cheers celebrating christmas holiday

The holiday season is a time for meeting friends and family around the table. We spend so much time preparing the holiday meal that sometimes we don’t give enough thought as to what drink pairs with the meal.

Well, this year, you don’t have to worry about it. Here are the best holiday food and wine pairings that you can have at your next seasonal celebration.

Wine Pairings for Holiday Dinner Parties

The great thing about wine is that there is a type for every taste preference, and it can be paired in so many ways. Holiday dinner parties don’t typically serve large roasts and casseroles—it’s more about the mingling and holiday cheer. Think tasty hors d’oeuvres and light dishes.

Here are some of the best wines for the holidays:

White Wines

No dinner party is complete without a good charcuterie board, featuring a beautiful display of cheeses, cured meats, fruits, nuts, olives, and breads. A great wine to pair with this is a light and dry white wine. Sauvignon Blanc or Riesling are excellent choices.

Red Wines

What better time to eat pizza than during the holidays? Gourmet pizza is such a great choice for a dinner party as there are so many unique flavors you can offer—from goat cheese and walnut to portobello mushroom and red pepper. Pair your pizza with a glass of good red wine.

Red wine also goes well with hearty pasta dishes. Lasagne can be paired with an acidic and fruity wine like Pinot Noir or Cabernet Sauvignon.

Sparkling Wines

Smoked salmon and cheese starters are a hit at any dinner party and can be paired with a lightly sparkling white wine like Prosecco or Cava. These make for great holiday wines.

Wine Pairings for Thanksgiving

Plate of sliced turkey with red wine in blurred background

Thanksgiving is typically celebrated with a big roast turkey dinner, so you want to be sure to pick a wine with rich, robust flavors and moderate acidity.

White Wines

If you are serving dishes with lots of green vegetables like green beans, asparagus, and Brussels sprouts, you will want to serve a good palate cleanser to break the heavy gravy and sauces. A Sauvignon Blanc is the perfect wine.

Red Wines

Wine pairing turkey is an important part of planning your Thanksgiving, and Pinot Noir is the best wine with turkey and a side of gravy. Pinot Noir is a light-enough red wine with some fruitiness to cut through the heavy gravy.

Sparkling Wines

When pairing sparkling wine with your Thanksgiving dinner, you don’t want a wine that is too dry or too sweet. A Prosecco Rosé is a good choice if you’re serving side dishes with sweet potato or fried foods.

Wine Pairings for Christmas

Table served for Christmas dinner

Christmas across the world has families sitting down for a large meal together, and whether it is lunch or dinner, there are some classic wine pairings you need to try.

White Wines

There are just so many different pairings when it comes to Christmas. Baked or smoked hams are a hit at Christmas, so you’ll want to pair them with a sweet but dry wine like a Riesling.

Roasted turkey and the savory dishes pair well with a Sauvignon Blanc or even a Viognier.

Red Wines

Red wines are great for rich roasts like beef. You’ll want to pair the roast beef with a full-bodied red like a red Bordeaux.

Rich and full-bodied Shiraz or Merlot are an excellent prime rib wine pairing.

Sparkling Wines

Sparkling wine is a great choice for classic Christmas desserts like pavlova or trifle. Pair a fruity, sparkling Moscato with your rich, dense Christmas pudding.

Or finish the meal off with a glass of dry champagne to cleanse your palate.

Wine Pairings for New Year’s

Home wine cellar

Many people celebrate New Year’s by eating dishes that bring luck, here are some holiday wines that pair with these dishes.

White Wines

Roasted tenderloin is popular because of its representation of good fortune. You can pair this dish with a Pinot Blanc or Chardonnay.

Red Wines

Many people make stuffed cabbage to represent money and pair the dish with full-bodied, highly acidic red wines that are fruity, like a Beaujolais or a Pinot Noir.

Sparkling Wines

Is it even New Year’s without any Champagne? Pair your Champagne with a cheese board or some light appetizers like crab cakes, caviar bites, and even oysters. The Champagne will cut through the richness of these foods.

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