Big Meals Equal Vibrant, Lively Wines

All of these choices are approachable and delicious in a variety of different ways.

The holiday season has officially kicked off and there is no better way to start the next month and a half than Thanksgiving. Excess is the name of the game but wines and ciders should uplift any fatty rich meal. Though the selections we’ve tasted this week sit well without any kind of food, they’re particularly well-suited to all things culinary. Imagine the tart sparkling cider to kick off your feast or cherry-forward wines to balance the turkey and mashed potatoes (or whatever else you decide to cook up). Whether or not you’re cooking at home or headed over to meet friends and family, all of these choices are approachable and delicious in a variety of different ways.

Cidre Cyril Zangs’ Ciderman

Sparkling cider with a superhero on the front? Sign us up! Ciderman is an eye-popping conversation starter at any party. It also happens to be one of the better ciders we’ve tasted this year. Yeasty and funky on the nose, it manages to be off dry but still has a bracing acidity that follows for a nice balance. That pronounced French barnyard funk grows on the finish but it’s never unapproachable or unpalatable. The apples, juicy and fresh, remain the star of this perfect aperitif.

Laurence et Rémi Dufaitre Beaujolais Villages Nouveau (2017)

Beaujolais Nouveau has grown into a cultural phenomenon in recent years along with higher price points. At $16, this particular iteration is both budget friendly and complex for being so young. Deep red color, we get a lot of dark ripe dark fruit and an unmistakable floral characteristic on the nose. Immediately on the palette you’re hit with tart cherry and crunchier blackberry notes. The acid is singsong as you’d expect but even in this new release, you get that pleasant, lingering earthiness.

Matassa Romanissa Casot (2016)

We are big fans of Matassa and were excited to get a new red in! Out of the glass, this is a deep but translucent red color. Immediately on the palette you get an explosive cherry flavor reminiscent of a cherry candy. The acid is high and there are soft tannins but this is immensely quaffable and not at all earthy as you might expect, given some the flavor notes. It has a very long and lean finish, giving some Mediterranean minerality given its location in Calce and, as we experienced by the second day, a floral note that builds at the very end of the wine as it continues to open up.

Ca’ de Noci Le Rose (2015)

This wine is done in the Frizzante style meaning that it is a lower pressure and therefore only lightly sparkling. Le Rose is a bit of a surprise stunner: remarkably floral aromatics on the nose, slightly sweet, with soft bubbles to hug your month. Stone fruit is the predominate flavor, reminding us of a fuzzy apricot, though there is enough elegant acidity to bind everything together. The finish is clean and the fruit lingers on the tongue for quite some time. This is a wonderful alternative to more conventional wines and will have guests, especially discerning ones, wanting more.

Join us next week, after you’ve let your stomach rest, for a slew of new releases from around the world.

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