9 Last-Minute Thanksgiving Stats, Facts and Recommendations


We know you’re busy. Even if you’ve taken the whole week off from work, you’re probably dealing with travel considerations or getting ready for the Big Feed or — worst-case scenario — both.

So today, we thought we’d share some interesting stats and facts about the holiday, as well as a few last-minute wine-pairing tips so you’ll know what to pull off the wine rack on Thursday…

  1. If you’re wondering exactly how long you need to cook that big bird, you’re not alone. The Butterball Turkey Talk Line expects to field 10,000 calls from inquisitive Thanksgiving hosts this week.
  2. By the way, if you’re serving turkey on Thursday, you are in the majority — by far. According to Statlists, turkey will be included on 81 percent of Thanksgiving menus.
  3. Did you know that 60 percent of cranberry production in the United States comes from a single state? That state is Wisconsin, which may be better known for cheese, beer and America’s only publicly owned professional sports team (the Green Bay Packers). All told, the U.S. produces 9.4 million 100-pound barrels of cranberries annually.
  4. We’ve said it before but it’s worth repeating: Don’t drive yourself crazy trying to pair specific wines with individual courses on Thanksgiving. Let’s face it: Most Turkey Day meals are not served by the course. Most are served family style, which means the palate is going to be assaulted (and delighted) by multiple flavors at the same time.
  5. Since most of us take a “smorgasbord” approach with the food, it makes sense to handle the wine selections in a similar manner. Be sure to include a mix of whites and reds, and opt for lighter styles over heavier ones, because they generally make better food-pairing partners.
  6. If you’re going to open only two bottles of wine, the go-to choices on Thanksgiving would be Chardonnay and Pinot Noir. After that, simply open additional varieties based on what you like. At our house, keeping our guest list in mind, our next choices would be a white blend and a red blend, followed by a Riesling and a Grenache, followed by a Gewurztraminer and a Zinfandel. But you should always make your own choices based on your own preferences and the known preferences of your guests.
  7. Some wines include descriptive terms on their back labels. Look for verbiage such as “supple” and “easy-drinking.” Of course, if you’re tapping your collection of Vinesse-procured wines, check the accompanying Tasting Notes for descriptive terms as well as the flavors you can expect.
  8. We sometimes forget that sparkling wine is another great choice for Thanksgiving Day. The refreshing quality makes most dry sparklers a nice choice, but probably the best would be a brut rosé because its red fruit flavors work wonderfully with turkey, various meats and numerous sides.
  9. Plan to take a long walk after the Big Feed, and an even longer one on Friday. If you’re an “average” American, you will consume 4,500 calories during the main Thanksgiving Day meal.

From all of us at Vinesse, travel safely, enjoy the day, and raise a glass to everything for which you’re thankful this year.

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Posted in Wine Buzz
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