15 Outstanding Thanksgiving Wines for $15 or Less

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Luckily, we’ve got experts like Courtney Schiessl, sommelier and wine writer, and Jamie-Lynn Argenta, food and beverage project manager for Ace Hotels, by our side to tease out the best Thanksgiving wines on a budget. “I love selecting Thanksgiving wine each year because the holiday meal itself offers such versatile opportunities for pairing delicious wines,” says Schiessl. “The centerpiece of Thanksgiving dinner—the turkey—is a neutral canvas for wine pairing.

For any dinner guests who deem themselves a connoisseur, this wine will impress even the most even your most persnickety friends. “Natural wine can be a slippery term, especially in the U. S. , where some winemakers rely on buying rather than growing their own grapes,” explains Argenta. “Broadside Wines uses what they call a ‘natural approach in that our wines are minimally handled to best express the grape, site and vintage. ’ They use little to no oak, and the result is a wine that’s lighter than most Merlot, juicy but dry with savory herb and stone fruit notes. ” Pair with a sausage-and-cranberry-dotted stuffing to make the flavor profile shine.

For the Sauvignon Blanc drinker in your life, this beautifully crisp Tuscan wine will make even the most fickle of wine drinkers happy. “Give the Pinot Grigio or Sauvignon Blanc–loving guests at Thanksgiving this Vermentino from Tuscany—though it’s made from an unfamiliar grape variety, it offers plenty of familiar flavors,” urges Schiessl. “Notes of fresh pear and zesty lime brighten up rich dishes while refreshing the palate between bites of turkey.

While pairing wine with food is the best way to taste the delicacies of each varietal, every chef needs a good glass (or two) to savor while cooking. “This Spanish blend is simple, easy-drinking, and slightly spritzy, which just ups the refreshment factor,” says Schiessl. “Driven by crisp citrus flavors, it’s the kind of wine you can drink from meal prep, through dinner, and during post-dinner football watching.

Chianti is the go-to red for both the reasonable cost and the flexible flavor profile, making it a staple for any dinner party. “The fresh herbs like oregano and basil, which complement ripe red cherry fruit, will pair perfectly with all of those herbs that get packed into the turkey’s stuffing,” explains Schiessl. “This is a lighter style of Chianti, so it won’t overwhelm the other flavors on your plate.

It’s tempting to indulge in quantity over quality by purchasing a few inexpensive magnum bottles to cut corners on a packed holiday affair. Resist the urge! You can have both. “This Zweigelt from Austria offers serious bang for your buck—besides being completely delicious; it’s also a full liter in size,” suggests Schiessl. “Think tart raspberry and cranberry fruit with a handful of fresh herbs and bright, clean acidity.

Lambrusco gets a bad rap for being “sweet and soda-like” when it’s anything but, which is why we are doubling down on these effervescent unicorn wines. “I firmly believe that good, dry Lambrusco is perfect for everyone! ” says Schiessl. “This is one of my favorites—soft red cherry and cranberry fruit, a slight floral tone, and turned earth meld together perfectly. ” This is the ideal pairing for your cranberry-sauce-loving guest.

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