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Thanksgiving 2021 Beer and Wine Pairing

By Lisa Mesa on Nov 06, 2021 in The Good Life
Thanksgiving 2021 Beer and Wine Pairing

Thanksgiving is all about coming together, finding balance and enjoying the variety.  This is true in our beverages, our foods and of course, our guests.  So many flavors, emotions and memories are set together around one table and it can be overwhelming.  You many find yourself looking at your guest list, grocery list, and prep list and think "where do I even begin"?

While we can't stop Uncle Larry from talking politics or prevent your sister from telling everyone who will listen about her new plant based lifestyle, we can help you with your beer and wine selections and who knows, everyone might be so impressed with how well your food and beverages get along that they might just decide they can too!  What?  It could happen, our 2021 selections are just that good!

Ok, let's jump right into it.

Sparkling Wine and Rose

2018 Loubud Blanc de Noirs Sparkling Wine, Santa Rita Hills $72

2020 Kimsey Rose of Grenache, Ballard Canyon $35

Sparkling Wines and Rose are the perfect start to a fabulous gathering.  They are bold enough to pair with the main meal.  They offer companion notes of strawberry, white raspberry, brioche, and Granny Smith apple and they tend to accentuate cranberry flavors.  We all know that bubbles are a GREAT palate cleanser.

White Wines

2019 Habit Sauvignon Blanc, Happy Canyon $43

Sauvignon Blanc is great with all kinds of vegetable dishes like brussel sprouts, green beans, and asparagus.  This wine can go where very few other wines can.  It's also a great palate cleanser when up against a table filled with rich foods.

Red Wines

Pinot Noir

2015 Brophy Clark Pinot Noir, Santa Maria $40

2017 Seagrape Pinot Noir, Santa Rita Hills $46

2016 Gogi Pinot Noir, Santa Rita Hills $75

2015 Mail Road Pinot Noir, Santa Rita Hills $100

Pinot Noir is the classic Thanksgiving wine pairing as it works so well in a variety of situations.  If you are serving Turkey, it works with both light and dark meat.  It pairs with simple seasoning as well as heavier cream based dishes and it accentuates cranberry flavors.

Rhone Blends

2017 Brophy Clark GSM, Santa Maria Valley $36

2017 J. Dirt Grenache/Syrah Blend, Edna Valley $50

2018 Press Gang "Milo" GSM, Santa Barbara Co. $52

Traditional Rhone blends incorporate Grenache, Syrah and Mourvedre.  With flavors of fig and dried berries from older bottlings pair with stuffing and squash while bolder bottlings work great with smoked Turkey.  Their earthy, meaty quality accentuates the savory quality in foods.


2018 Brophy Clark Zinfandel, Paso Robles $36

2016 Arndt Cellars Zinfandel, Paso Robles $55

Long considered "California's Red Wine grape", Zin amplifies spices like clove, cinnamon and all spice.  Zinfandel is bold, rich, adds smokiness and is typically higher in alcohol.  With all this going on it pairs very well with dark meat and heavy, rich foods.

Other notable pairings

2020 Final Girl Chenin Blanc, Santa Ynez Valley $36

Pairs perfectly with honey baked ham.  The high acidity cuts through rich dishes and the effervescence cleanses the palate.

2016 Kimsey Syrah, Ballard Canyon $70

2016 Crown Point Cabernet Sauvignon, Happy Canyon $150

While Cabernet Sauvignon is a classic pairing for Prime Rib, Syrah is a great match with notes of blue fruit, peppery spice and a hint of smokiness.

Independent Craft Beer

Thanksgiving 2021 Beer and Wine Pairing

Farmhouse Ale - Saison

Oakland United Beerworks "Happy Camper" Saison 16 oz  $8/26

This style of beer goes well with salty foods, strong cheeses, salads and Turkey.  The carbonation has a similar effect as the bubbles in Champagne, it's a great palate cleanser.  Saison would be a great start with appetizers but goes just as well on the dinner table.

Brown Ale

Temblor Brewing Co. Almond Brown Ale 12oz $6/20

Brown Ales are fantastic with Turkey and honey glazed ham, as well as most of the sides served along with them.  Light in body but rich in dark nutty flavor and just enough bitterness to keep those taste buds alert and ready for the next bite/sip!

Amber Ale

Smog City Brewing "Saber Toothed Squirrel" Hoppy Amber 16 oz $8/26

The Amber Ale with it's maltiness and notes of caramel can take you from Turkey to sides and right on through to dessert (especially Apple Pie). 


Pond Farm "Daily Brot" German style Dunkel $8/26

Dunkels are light bodied, and malty with a dry finish making them the perfect partner for rich foods like mashed potatoes, sweet potatoes, stuffing and Turkey.  There is just enough dark caramel notes to be served with pecan pie.


Oakland United Beerworks "Pullman" Imperial Porter 16 oz $8/26

Humdinger Brewing "Roast Coaster" Imperial Porter 16 oz $8/26

Porter was made for dessert and a wide variety at that.  From Pumpkin Pie, Pecan Pie, and anything chocolate.  Light body with notes of coffee blend so well with spices like cinnamon and nutmeg and the toasty flavors tame the sweetness of dessert.


Apples are the poster child for fall making Cider the perfect accompaniment to everything on your Thanksgiving table.  Dry, semi dry and sweet, they are all fair game and can be served at different times through out the meal.  We have several styles in house to choose from.

Other notable pairings

Calicraft Brewing "Buzzerkely" 2015 Sparkling Sour Ale 750ml $21

Fermented with Champagne yeast creating spicy, fruity esters.  California Starthistle honey and a blend of Belgian and American malts makes this sparkler similar to a Belgian Golden Strong or dry Champagne and would go perfect with Turkey and mild to sharp cheeses.

Los Angeles Ale Works "Red Beard" DDH West Coast IPA $8/26

Featuring a French Alsatian hop called Barbe Rouge.  Low bitterness with complex citrus and red berry aromas that lead to a clean, dry finish.  Pair this with your cranberry sauce, salad or cheesecake.  In general IPA's cut through rich, heavy foods.

We hope that you find something wonderful and inspiring in this years guide.  We have so many delicious options here in the shop that it was difficult to try to narrow it down to just a few.   No need to stress, we've done the work for you so you can relax and enjoy the day with family and friends.

From the Good Life family to you and yours, Cheers!

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