Pursuits: Give thanks for the wine

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Thursday, November 01, 2007


Want to impress your guests with the wine selection at your Thanksgiving feast? We asked Erica Landon, sommelier and general manager at Ten 01 restaurant in Portland’s Pearl District, to select a few of her Oregon favorites for the occasion.


To start your meal in style, Landon says, there’s nothing better than a sparkling wine. “Whenever you’re talking about holidays and celebrating with family, I always enjoy bubbles,” she says. Her top choice is the 2002 Argyle Brut ($25) from Argyle Winery in Dundee, an “approachable” traditional champagne.

Main course

“Turkey goes with just about everything,” Landon says, so select a variety of wines to match the side dishes. Pinot noir complements rich stuffing, gravy and cranberries, while chardonnay pairs well with mashed potatoes and other vegetables.

Landon says she’s taking home a bottle or two of the 2005 Anden Vineyard pinot from St. Innocent Winery in Salem ($39). She describes it as elegant, with cinnamon and cedar notes — a light drink that won’t overwhelm the many other flavors at the table.

As for chardonnay, Landon says those produced by the Oregon Chardonnay Alliance are top notch, especially the 2004 Chardonnay Cuvée Forêts Diverses ($30) from Hamacher Wines in Carlton (“finishes perfectly”) and Ian’s Reserve ($32) from Chehalem in Newberg (“great acidity”).

For something more robust, Landon recommends syrahs from Walla Walla, Wash., and Southern Oregon, which boast candied, bright red notes of raspberries and plums. From Solena Cellars in Carlton, Landon suggests the 2003 Del Rio Vineyard ($30). From Domaine Serene in Dayton, she recommends the rich, dark Rockblock label (2004 Seven Hills Vineyard at $45 or the 2003 Del Rio Vineyard at $40).


For the classic pumpkin pie, Landon couples the golden raisin, spicy quality of the 2005 Dragonfly Vineyard Gewürztraminer Passito ($28) from Francis Tannahill Wine Co. in Dundee. For non-traditionalists, Adelsheim Vineyard in Newberg makes the Willamette Valley Deglacé pinot noir ($34) with a “rich fullness and beautiful pink hue” that pairs well with cherry or apple pie and other fruit desserts. Take your pick and uncork a fabulous Thanksgiving.                  


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