Thanksgiving in Canada is the second Monday in October, because by the time the last Thursday of November comes around Canada is frozen solid and a turkey won’t thaw. So that means Canadian wine drinkers have to think ahead, and are already in the final stages of what-wine-to-serve-with-turkey panic.
Because I am oddly fascinated with Canada, I thought I’d go see what Canadians are planning for this Thanksgiving. And, from the looks of things, Canadians are giving up. Which doesn’t strike me as unwise, by the way.
Greg Pinhey of the Telegraph-Journal suggests you pick the wines and prepare the food to match the wines you choose.c
You find that a Riesling can be matched by using something with volatile compounds in the terpene family, very floral and citrus, so that includes rosemary, citrus fruit, lemongrass, saffron, and thyme, among many others. So stuffing your turkey with lemons and these herbs, or rubbing it with olive oil and rosemary, will bring Riesling into the picture. Alternately, if you have a Pinot Noir uncorked and at the ready, then science would tell you to stuff the turkey with strawberries, cloves and cinnamon.
Wine expert Michaela Morris, interviewed by Vancouver’s Straight.com says Thankgiving guests shouldn’t bother with matching:
Just bring a bottle for the hosts to enjoy later.
Doug Sloan of the Courier-Islander (“Serving the Salmon capitol of the world”) in British Columbia despairs at the red-wine-white-wine conundrum and cops to rosé:
Make an end run around these mostly bogus and seriously outdated wine etiquette obstacles this Thanksgiving and just serve Rosés – there’s a style for almost every taste and situation.
Lisa Kadane of the Calgary Herald suggests a Riesling-based punch:
There’s no better time to haul out Gran’s vintage punch bowl than for Thanksgiving dinner, when you’re expected to promptly and graciously serve food and drink to a whole whack of relatives.
Finally, chef Laura Clarke-Giberson, quoted in the Vancouver Sun, suggests fruit wines:
“The fruit flavours connect so well with the autumn harvest in this country,” said Clarke-Giberson, a chef who has created recipes using fruit wines as an essential ingredient, including a poached pear dessert and a fennel salad with a strawberry wine vinaigrette…One of her favourite twists is to serve it when guests arrive as a welcome. For something different, she suggests pouring a fruit wine, like black currant, in a champagne-style flute glass along with a favourite sparkling wine and topping the drink with raspberries.
Which actually sounds like pretty good advice.