Pairings | Christmas turkey
One of the most popular posts I’ve ever written on this site was one called 20 food and wine pairings to learn by heart - an easy reference guide to commit to memory.
Even those who normally drink beer feel the need to put a bottle of red wine on the table at Christmas* but beer is actually just as good, if not a better accompaniment for turkey.
Today is International Grenache Day, a celebration of a grape which is (often anonymously) responsible for some of the most generous and appealing reds in the wine world.
Looking at the recipes online for Thanksgiving turkeys, stuffings and sides they’re very much sweeter (and more imaginative) than the typical UK Christmas turkey. They’re often brined, glazed or spiced (or all three), sometimes deep-fried and often accompanied by cornbread-based stuffings and sweet-tasting vegetables like sweet potatoes and squash.
There’s a myth that cooking a Christmas turkey is simple - a slightly souped up version of an ordinary Sunday roast. In fact it’s quite tricky because of the size of the bird and the number of other things you have to get ready at the same time.
You may already have your own favourite wine pairing for turkey but if you're looking for inspiration here are some of my favourite matches.
How many of you will be putting beer on the table at Christmas? Not that many, I suspect, but if you can bring yourself to break with tradition you could be in for a treat. Most supermarkets now carry a sufficiently wide range for you to be able to serve a different beer with each course, should you be so minded. And here’s how to do it:
We decided some time ago we were going to drink Beaujolais with our turkey in memory of the late Marcel Lapierre who very sadly died back in September. I thought his vibrant fruity 2009 Morgon would be ideal with the classic Christmas feast and so it proved to be, mirroring the tartness and fruitiness of the cranberry sauce.
By now you might think I’d have explored all possible permutations with turkey but sommelier Jacob Kocemba was singing the praises of Mencia with turkey on Twitter the other day and as we had a magnum handy I thought I’d give it a try.
If you want to drink interesting wine pop into your local indie. Shouldn’t need saying but even I sometimes forget