How Much Wine Should You Expect To Go Through At Thanksgiving?

Thanksgiving is not only a day to give thanks for all of our blessings, it's also a day filled with enormous bounty: from turkey and mashed potatoes to cranberry sauce, pumpkin pie, and all the other traditional fixings. For most of us, the Thanksgiving dinner menu is practically set in stone — at least in terms of food. But the options are a bit more varied when it comes to wine.

There are several shopping tips to keep in mind when buying wine for Thanksgiving. One should not spend too much buying many different kinds of wine. According to Amanda Davenport, sommelier and wine director at Noisette in Denver, Colorado, simplicity is the best policy. "Depending on how many guests you are hosting, try to have a few options; some people prefer white to red, or the opposite, but don't feel like you have to spend a great deal on any single bottle. There are lots of good options for a good value!"

Thanksgiving wine advice from a sommelier

When it comes to buying wines for Thanksgiving dinner, the trickier part is figuring out how many bottles to buy based on the guest count. Davenport recommends following a simple rule to avoid buying too much. "I'd usually suggest one bottle per two people," she says, but notes that this formula can be tweaked slightly if, for example, you're hosting a group that typically doesn't drink much.

So what pairs well with turkey? Our expert has some tips here, too! Davenport actually feels it's more important to find wines that go well with the wider variety of foods being served, rather than concentrating on a pairing for any specific dish. Beaujolais is a classic red wine pairing Davenport endorses for a traditional Thanksgiving meal. She also thinks Chenin Blanc, a white wine variety, is perfect for the occasion, although she's not opposed to Champagne, or sparkling wines in general. It is a celebration, after all.