Our Wine Buyers’ Top Picks for Thanksgiving: White, Red and Bubbly

I Clivi in Corno di Rosazzo

I Clivi in Corno di Rosazzo

This year, we decided to let each of our wine buyers choose their number one pick for a Thanksgiving wine. Here we have an Italian bubbly from Gemma, an off-dry German white from Julie, and a French red from Jessica. Happy sipping and have a safe and delicious holiday!

I Clivi Ribolla Spumante, NV – Friuli, Italy

I Clivi Ribolla Spumante, NV - Friuli, ItalyThe I Clivi Ribolla Spumante is a dry and elegant sparkling wine made by the Zanusso family with notes of Meyer lemon and faint floral and herbal undertones. The Ribolla grape (as seen in the above photo of the vineyards below the Zanusso’s home and wine cellar in Corno di Rosazzo, Italy), is a varietal with marked acidity, making for an excellent food wine. It’s a great, less pricey alternative to Champagne for a big Thanksgiving meal. Perfect for toasting or serving with appetizers, use this crisp, organic bubbly to properly kick off your holiday festivities. – Gemma, Formaggio Kitchen Cambridge

Clos Cibonne “Cuvée Spéciale” Tibouren Rouge 2012

Clos Cibonne “Cuvée Spéciale” Tibouren Rouge 2012From a tiny Domaine that sits just 800 meters inland from the coast of Provence, comes this lovely red wine made from a little indigenous varietal called Tibouren. The Roux family, who have been making wine here for the past 300 years, are responsible for championing the local wine traditions in this part of Provence with their super traditional cuvées, both rosé and red – made from this virtually unheard of varietal. The Roux’s location – just in from the coast – presents the perfect microclimate for growing temperamental Tibouren. Sea breezes come up into the sun-soaked vineyards, tempering any heat and helping the grapes to ripen properly. The Clos Cibonne “Cuvée Spéciale ” is fresh and bright with an aromatic nose of strawberries, raspberries and mountain herbs. It has an easy drinking body full of fruit and earth, and spiced mineral finish. It is wonderfully versatile with food and is light-bodied enough to sip all the way through a heavy Thanksgiving meal. – Jessica, Formaggio Kitchen Cambridge

Leitz “Dragonstone” Riesling 2012 – Rheingau, Germany

Leitz "Dragonstone" Riesling 2012 - Rheingau, Germany

A high-acid, low-alcohol white wine with a hint of sweetness is the ideal match to the varied Thanksgiving table, where rich, buttery textures are combined with herbal flavors and sweet fruits, vegetables and sauces. Leitz’s Dragonstone Riesling (from the “Drachenstein” vineyard!) has a perfect balance of freshness and mouth-watering fruit – elegant and ever-so-slightly spicy. This wine has been a staff and customer favorite for years and my family never has a Thanksgiving dinner without it! – Julie, Formaggio Kitchen South End

Julie Cappellano is the General Manager and Wine Buyer at Formaggio Kitchen South End, Boston. Gemma Iannoni and Jessica Smith are cheesemongers and the Wine Buyers at Formaggio Kitchen Cambridge.