“Thirsty Thursday:” A Pre-Thanksgiving Feast

Wine: Funky Llama Pinot Grigio, Bodega Tintoralba Garnacha TintoreraManatawny Creek’s Razz Bear Ease

Food: Thanksgiving Dinner

Occasion: Large Gathering with the intent to taste food and drink wine!

I have some amazing friends that live nearby. Besides the fact they have an adorable dog, they own a beautiful house, and to top it off they got married in Hawaii, they are fun to hangout with and amazing chefs. Every year, they host Thanksgiving dinner for their families and this year they invited us to the Pre-Thanksgiving-Dinner-Recipe-Testing-Extraordinaire.

We knew there were going to be about 10 people dinning together, so we elected to bring two bottles of wine; a red and a white.

These two caught our eye while we were perusing the PA Wine and Liquor store and made it into the car to take to dinner.

Funky Llama makes a few different bottles of wine, but unfortunately I could not find a website for their winery! I can tell you (by googling it) that this wine was $7.99 and is going to be served at the 2012 Philadelphia International Flower Show in March. This winery is based from Argentina, and I chose it because I am fond of Pinot Grigios and the little silhouette of a happy llama made me smile.

Bodega Tintoralba Garnacha Tintorera is a “Spanish Inspiration” wine and is a product of Spain. I could find very little information about this wine online, this is the website for the wine, but I can’t find it on the main winery’s website. I can tell you we chose it because it advertised that it was a fruit-driven red wine and on the taste scale at the wine store, it scored in the middle (not overly sweet and not overly dry). I believe this particular bottle is a 2009 from Spain. Also when we popped the cork on the bottle, and poured a glass, it was a beautiful deep color of red.

Let me give your minds eye a visual taste of some the delicious food that we ate at this get together.
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Roast Brined Turkey with Carrots, Potatoes, and Gravy
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LEFT: Table Setting RIGHT: Seafood Chowder
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TOP: Deviled Egg Creme in Center bone Bacon Cups MIDDLE: Stuffed Mushrooms BOTTOM: Chipotle Chicken Tostadas with Guacamole Topping
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LEFT TOP: Scalloped Corn with Corn Succotash LEFT BOTTON: Butternut Squash with Marshmallow Merinque RIGHT: Maple Syrup Sweet Potatoes with homemade Cranberry Sauce
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LEFT TOP: Pumpkin Cupcakes LEFT BOTTOM: Nutty Cinnamon Bars RIGHT TOP: Banana Bread Cupcakes RIGHT BOTTOM: Baked Autumn Apples filled with nuts, apple, and sugar
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Razz Bear Ease Wine from Manatawny Creek Winery

It rings in at 12% alcohol and is made locally here in PA! It is really a dessert-like wine, but it was quickly consumed by all before we even made it to the dessert course. I think I’d very much like to drink this wine accompanied by a large piece of cheesecake or a bowl of vanilla ice cream. Just a warning: if you don’t like fruity or overly sweet wines, don’t bother. It tastes like a raspberry dream, especially for only $11.95 a bottle.I started my dinning experience with the Funky Llama Pinot Grigio. It paired beautifully with the appetizers and most of dinner. Since it is a lighter, crisper, more delicate wine, it went better with the appetizer course, but I stubbornly drank it with my dinner as well. I also poured myself a glass for after dinner. It was perfect to just sip and digest with because it is so light.

I had to ask Travis to review the Bodega Tintoralba Garnacha Tintorera because I only had one sip. Here’s what he has to say about this particular red wine.

“The Bodega Tintoralba Garnacha Tintorera is a mix of the lightest and least dry reds found in Europe. Designed as a table wine, the wine was not dry at all and matched perfectly with the white meat of the turkey. Considering the wine is incredibly light bodied, like a pinot noir, it had little to no finish. The light finish didn’t overpower the taste of the food, rather complimented it, allowing me to enjoy the classic Thanksgiving flavors. I am not sure I would open a bottle of this wine to drink on an afternoon overlooking my backyard, however as a nice table wine where you want something with slightly more body than a white wine, yet don’t want the tannins of a traditional red.” – Travis

The real winner for wine was brought by another guest. Manatawny Creek Winery’s Razz Bear Ease is a wine made from 20% raspberries and 80% grapes.

Well, three wines is a mighty large undertaking. I tackled this in preparation for the holiday season, when we are to drink and be merry! Don’t be afraid to try something different and new this holiday season, who knows, you might like it! If you stumble across any delicious holiday food and wine pairings, please, drop me a line.

Happy Thanksgiving!
Cheers! -Jen

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