The Best Wines for Thanksgiving Dinner

November 15, 2018

After spending countless hours preparing the turkey, orchestrating the perfect array of side dishes, and decorating your house for visitors, there is one last box to check before sitting down for the biggest feast of the year -- selecting the wine.

Thanksgiving dinner brings many types of foods and flavors, so there are a few factors to consider when deciding what varietal earns a spot on the table. Are you looking for something to pair with the entire meal, or do you want to switch it up course by course? Do guests prefer red or white? What flavors do you want highlighted?

To help narrow it down, we asked the knowledgeable tasting room staff at some of the most notable wineries across the West Coast what they recommend.

2017 Langtry Viognier, Guenoc Valley AVA

Langtry Estate | Middletown, CA

“The playful floral nose and delicate stone fruit palate this wine offers is the perfect pairing with your holiday bird and decadent sides! With notes of tropical fruit and a bright mid palate it can stand up to that pound of butter you put in your mashed potatoes.” - Jessie Zielsdorf, Hospitality Manager & Wine Club Concierge at Langtry Estate

Shop the '17 Langtry Viognier


2016 Foley Sonoma Pinot Noir, Russian River Valley

Foley Sonoma | Geyserville, CA

“If you’re looking for the perfect pairing for a rich, salty Thanksgiving dinner then you want a Pinot. It’s a versatile red -- it’s light, rich in fruit, and with high acid (which creates the perfect balance with salt). Pair one of our shades of Pinot with turkey, cranberry sauce, gravy… yum, I’m getting hungry!” - Rebekah Nelson, Hospitality Manager at Foley Sonoma

Shop the '16 Foley Sonoma Pinot Noir

PRO TIP: Can’t find a bottle of the ‘16 Foley Sonoma Pinot Noir? Rebekah also recommends Foley Sonoma’s ‘17 Rosé of Pinot Noir and ‘16 Sparkling Blanc de Noir.

2016 Lancaster Estate Winemaker's Cuvée, Alexander Valley

Lancaster Estate | Healdsburg, CA

“The 2016 Winemaker’s Cuvée is medium-bodied (perfect for turkey!), with a savory finish that will pair well with the fixings." - Greg Reid, Tasting Room Manager at Lancaster Estate

> Shop the '16 Lancaster Winemaker's Cuvée


2016 Three Rivers Syrah, Walla Walla Valley

Three Rivers Winery | Walla Walla, WA

"Softer tannins and round palate play nice with the neutral flavors of the Thanksgiving feast, creamy gravy, and turkey." - Andy Slusarenko, Assistant Winemaker & General Manager at Three Rivers Winery

Shop the '16 Three Rivers Syrah


2016 Sebastiani Patrick's Vineyard Chardonnay

Sebastiani Vineyard & Winery | Sonoma, CA

Can't go wrong with the 2016 Patrick's Vineyard Chardonnay. It's one of the Burgundian staples of our portfolio pair classically with your holiday bird.

Shop the '16 Sebastiani Chardonnay

Looking for a red to add to the table alongside the '16 Sebastiani Patrick's Vineyard Chardonnay? The '16 Sebastiani Robert's Vineyard Pinot Noir is also highly recommended! 

2014 Foley Johnson Merlot

Foley Johnson | Rutherford, CA

"The 2014 Foley Johnson Merlot is medium-bodied with excellent acid - great to match with the varied flavors on a loaded Thanksgiving day plate." - Kenny Koda, Senior Hospitality Manager for Napa Valley, Foley Food & Wine Society

Shop the '14 Foley Johnson Merlot


2014 Chalk Hil Estate Pinot Noir

Chalk Hill Estate | Healdsburg, CA

"I'll be bringing our 2015 Estate Pinot Noir. It is a light wine with tons of fresh, bright red fruit on the nose and pallet that plays with the delicateness of the moist turkey and will compliment the sides as well." - Eric Mercer, Senior Hospitality Manager at Chalk Hill


2015 Roth Reserve Trenton Vineyard Pinot Noir, Russian River Valley

Roth Estate | Healdsburg, CA

"This wine opens with a gorgeous bouquet of red cherry, rasperry and cassis.  The palate follows suit with red fruits, forest floor and notes of espresso. A pleasing acidity complements the fixings of a turkey dinner warmed with sweet potatoes and stuffing and everything in between." - Stephanie Culen, Hospitality and Sales Manager at Roth Estate

Shop the '15 Roth Reserve Pinot Noir


2016 Firestone Reserve Chardonnay 

Firestone Vineyard | Los Olivos, CA

"With some some oak influence, this wine offers butterscotch and a nice round finish - but the acidity balances well with any dish on your thanksgiving table." - Linda Van Hook, Group Sales Manager for Southern California, Foley Family Wines

Shop the '16 Firestone Reserve Chardonnay


2016 Eos Reserve Santa Margarita Zinfandel

Eos | Paso Robles, CA

"The 2016 Reserve Santa Margarita Zinfandel has nice soft peppery nose and taste in addition to being fruity and jammy all of which will pair well with all the flavors that tend to be enjoyed during this day of giving thanks.  Family and friends will undoubtedly will have an easy time enjoying this wine and bring themselves to ask the question: What other event or occasion can the 2016 Reserve Santa Margarita Zinfandel be enjoyed?" - Jesus Fernandez, Sales Associate at Eos

Shop the '16 Eos Reserve Zinfandel

More from FFWS

Learn About the Society

Enjoy the best of the Foley Food & Wine Society! Receive invitations to events, tours, tastings, special offers on exclusive wines, and access to our partner properties.

Pairing Wine with Cuisine

Great wine goes with great food. Explore our recipe section for great menu ideas to pair with our wines to create amazing flavors to be enjoyed by you and your guests.