Here are some selections for Thanksgiving Day from Tom Bender, wine instructor at Columbia College and wine steward for O'Brien's Market, 4120 Dale Road, Modesto.
Gloria Ferrier Blanc Noir
Nicely crafted pink sparkling wine with its yeasty, light strawberry aromas and fine bead of bubbles; a great starter. With 92 percent pinot noir in this blend, it shows plenty of red fruit character while remaining refreshing to the last sip. Multiple gold medal winner. About $19.
A good all-purpose white. With its ample spice and full-bodied structure, this Thomas Fogarty 2007 Santa Cruz white matches well with most of the flavors in the Thanksgiving meal. Medium dry; hints of ginger and pineapple with enough richness to satisfy chardonnay drinkers. About $14.
Rusack 2007 Pinot Noir
Pinot noir's bright structure and lower level of tannins make it a good candidate for matching most of the savory dishes. Rusack Winery is in the Santa Maria Valley and this Central Coast red with its forward fruit has plenty of spice and raspberry character. Its long finish will invite a second glass. About $30.
This is from Fred Tasker of The Miami Herald:
Released on the third Thursday of November, France's beaujolais nouveau is the first wine of the season in the northern hemisphere. It's vinified quickly and gently, turning out a light-bodied, unserious, very fruity red wine from the gamay grape that's intended for drinking without navel contemplation.
Served at about 55 degrees, cooler than usual for a red wine, it goes well with Thanksgiving turkey. It goes even better with that day-after turkey sandwich. Puts you in the mood for holiday shopping.