Cheap Wines That Don't Suck (for Thanksgiving) There's nothing like a holiday to bring the latent suckitude in everyone and everything. Sucky relatives, sucky jobs, sucky airports, sucky traffic, sucky food, sucky weather, sucky expectations. . . it's a sucky world, and we're just living in it.
But even if everything about Thanksgiving sucks--or at least purses its lips really, really hard--one thing that doesn't have to is your wine. So Charlie went back through several months of non-suckable wines (all $12 and under) in search of those that might bring a smile to your face and a quiver of delight to your taste buds while all around you is the giant slurping sound of. . . yeah, sucking.
• Cupcake Vineyards 2008 Yakima Valley Riesling. Ripe
melon and pear fruit backed by crisp acidity make this Washington wine
play well with everything from turkey to sweet potatoes.
• Andeluna 2008 Torrontes. Made from the white
wine grape of Argentina, this wine's floral, fruity aromas give way to
soft citrus flavors that can balance the richness of dark meat and
• Dry Creek 2008 Chenin Blanc. Like oyster
dressing with your turkey? This neglected varietal combines a bracing
minerality and earthy, peachy character to complement bread and
• Jaboulet Parallele 45 Rosé. Can't
decide between red or white? Try rosé. This easily available French
rosé splits the difference nicely, with a steely backbone and bright,
• Maurel Vedeau 2008 Saveurs Veritables. Pinot
Noir with real varietal character for $6.99? Tart berry fruit and lots
of smoky, earthy nuances make it a versatile T-Day wine.
• Blackstone 2007 California Merlot. With
its fat blackberry-cherry fruit and haunting undertones of cloves,
olives and mushrooms, this wine can stand up to the heartiest dishes.
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• Georges Duboeuf 2007 Beaujolais-Villages and 2009 Beaujolais Nouveau. Refreshing
lemony acidity and candied strawberry-raspberry fruit make the B-V an
excellent Thanksgiving wine, while the fresh, simple flavors of the
Nouveau make it a perfect pre-dinner quaff.