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Best Wine With Turkey

Best Wine With Turkey

Best Wine For Thanksgiving

Wondering what the best wine with turkey is? Wine pairing with turkey really depends on the seasonings and  Turkey Rub you select as turkey meat is like a blank canvas; the turkey rub really dictates the flavor.

With a low fat content, turkey is a mild flavored meat and pairs really well with a variety of wines.

Wine Pair with Turkey

When making this list, we considered the most popular Thanksgiving recipes, turkey recipes and flavor profiles including our favorites: Smoked Turkey, Sous Vide Turkey Breast, Smoked Turkey Wings, Smoked Turkey Breast and Instant Pot Turkey.

Best Wine with Turkey Tips

Curate a variety of wines vs. sticking with one. Why? There are many parts to a turkey, each tasting a bit differently from the other. A white turkey breast won’t have the same deep flavor as dark meat.

Go with what you love. Since turkey has a very mild flavor, don’t over think it. If it’s something you enjoy, go for it.

While shopping, keep in mind the ideal varietals are light or medium-bodied red wine or full-bodied white wine. Think low-medium tannins with high acidity.

Pouring a Pinot Noir wine

Red Wine

Red Zinfandel

What wine should you serve with your turkey this year? Zinfandel is on the top of our list. Here’s why:

Zinfandel is a fruity, full-bodied red wine with notes of blackberry, cherry, and pepper. It’s the perfect match for turkey, which can be a bit bland on its own. The bold flavors of Zinfandel will stand up to the rich taste of turkey gravy and mashed potatoes, and the acidity will cut through the fat in the dish.


Beaujolais wine brings an assortment of pairing variations due to it’s light body and high acidity. It plays extremely well with cranberry sauce and buttery side dishes such as garlic mashed potatoes.

Opt for a Beaujolais Nouveau if you’re looking for a wine with low alcohol content. Avoid any alcohol-related holiday issues with this option.


Gamay is a light-bodied red wine similar in taste to Pinot Noir, but without the high price tag and astringent taste. It’s a red option all guests will enjoy.

The higher acidity and little tannin structure makes it a straightforward wine option for Turkey Day. Think tart flavors of red fruits like cherry, raspberry, cranberry, and red currant.


A subtle red is the perfect wine to pair with turkey. It has a subtle spice and flavor that doesn’t overwhelm the turkey and Thanksgiving side dishes.

If you’re looking for the perfect red wine to pair with your Thanksgiving turkey, look no further than Sangiovese. This subtle red has just the right amount of spice and flavor to complement your meal without overwhelming it.

So go ahead and pour yourself a glass (or two) of Sangiovese this holiday season. Your taste buds will thank you.

Pinot Noir

Pinot noir is a great pairing with turkey or even double smoked ham. Pinot noir has high acidity making it versatile to pair food with. Look for Old World regions as their earth tones, think mushrooms and tart cherries, lend to pairing with Thanksgiving food.

If you prefer more juice-forward wine, go with options from the United States or Australia.

white wine being poured into a wine glass.

White Wine

Dry Riesling

Riesling is our #1 recommendation if you’re looking for a varietal that would suite many pallets. It’s light on the tongue therefore enjoyable for all levels of wine drinkers.

Riesling pairs well with any Thanksgiving dish you could think of…from Crack Green Beans to Jiffy Corn Casserole. Riesling is a perfect pairing with it’s high acid and mineral traits. It goes with classic herb turkey and cajun turkey.


Not a fan of oaky whites? Check out Viognier, a less popular white. Viognier’s stone fruit flavors and honey undertone are the perfect pairings with turkey meat. Look for Viognier’s from Australia, Northern Rhone France and South Africa.


Chardonnay is a classic pairing with turkey due to it’s crisp acidity and mineral undertones. Chardonnay compliments the traditional herbal notes used to season the bird. In fact, it would also work as a great basting liquid for the turkey.

Oaky Chardonnay will bring out the complex textures of the turkey and play up the delicate flavor. A fruity Chardonnay, think Chablis, offers a more delicate finish.

No matter which spectrum you choose, Chardonnay makes a great pairing with turkey.


We’re a bit biased; anytime is Champagne time. Whether you’re celebrating a holiday or celebrating the fact it’s Friday, sparking wine should be on the menu.

Champagne is a great pairing with turkey due to it’s high acidity and clean flavors. The clean flavors allows it to pair with any seasonings you use – from classic garlic and herb to cajun. There’s no better pairing for smoked or fried turkey. Or for any Thanksgiving side dishes.

Leave a comment and let us know what your favorite “best wine with turkey” option is!


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If smoking a turkey, make sure to check out our list of the Best Wood For Smoking Turkey as well as our 20 Pitmaster Tips For Smoking Turkey article!