The holidays are a time for wine to uniquely shine. It’s always nice to have an occasion to take out the glassware, especially if you are entertaining. Meals for Thanksgiving and Christmas are great opportunities to select the perfect pairings. In late November, you might be savoring Thanksgiving leftovers or planning your next big meal.

Below we’ve combined a few of our favorite recommendations for holiday pairings.

Highlight: Gewürztraminer

Gewürztraminer is a favorite versatile white. It’s highly aromatic, so it feels festive when consumed at a special occasion, and its flavor offers a bit of dryness and spice, making it suitable for dessert and the main course alike.

Typically paired with spicy foods, Gewürztraminer, can come from dry to semi-sweet. However, the complexity and richness of the wine makes it compatible with an array of foods. It has a lower acidity than Riesling, and the low acidity and high aromas make it taste sweet (Gewürztraminer is easily identified by its tell tale lychee aroma). Start with the drier styles if you’re pairing with the main course, and you’ll quickly find that this mouthful is more than just a dessert wine.

Side dishes

For your basic meat and potato courses, a Pinot Noir is a great choice for red. It’s a good, light, all-purpose dinner choice, that most of-age guests will enjoy. Pinot Noir also pairs well with mushrooms, root vegetables, and other great veggie flavors like shallots and leeks.

If you’re looking for whites, Pinot Grigio also pairs well with most holiday side dish veggies. These tend to be on the green and leafy side, so a crisp white is a good choice. Whether you’re doing a basic salad or something like an asparagus or artichoke dish, this pick is great with dishes that are roasted or fried.

via Food Republic

For casseroles and flavorful carbs, look no further than a Sauvignon Blanc. The fruity flavors do well with many herb-spiced dishes in addition to sides like bread, cheese, corn, and spiced potatoes.


A favorite sweet white of many folks is Riesling. Sweet or dry, this white pairs well with most desserts. If you’re looking for an alternative to go along with your apple pie, don’t overlook the option of coffee with an Irish cream.

Miscellaneous Dishes

The holidays are a perfect time to bust out wine choices that you might overlook during a regular social outing. Pull out your thin glasses to enjoy some rose or sparkling wines to accompany your appetizers or your after dinner conversations. For guests who are not sure which flavors might be their favorites, a sherry or a champagne might be a great choice. Either way, use this occasion as an opportunity to clink glasses with your friends and family, whatever their tastes may be.