Maxim - The Best Wines and Spirits to Drink on Thanksgiving, According to Experts

By Kate Dingwall for Maxim 

Bartenders and sommeliers share their favorite wines and spirits to drink on Turkey Day. 

No matter what your Thanksgiving looks like this year—whether it’s a socially-distanced soiree or a full-on family feast—you’re going to need a little vino to fuel the festivities. But this year, skip the traditional wine pairings and reach for bartender and sommelier-approved bottles.

“Thanksgiving is one of my favorite holidays to pair wines with,” describes Zack Musick, the beverage director at Merriman’s Hawaii. “No matter where you go, you can almost always guarantee certain dishes will probably be there, making it easy to pair.” That said, he recommends bringing a range of bottles. “Nobody knows what every member of the family likes to drink and chances are they all like different things, so the best option is to bring multiple affordable bottles.” Though after the collective year, consider cracking open a showpiece bottle, perhaps a bubbly or a complex red, to start the evening. 

With the help of a panel of beverage experts, we paired out bottles for every dish on your holiday table. (Plus, our favorite after-dinner whiskeys and options to impress everyone from in-laws to the wine geeks in your life.) 





“For people who like to have a little afternoon tea as a kind of aperitif before gorging themselves on a huge Thanksgiving dinner, try pairing with FEW Immortal Rye,” advises Kevin Rogers, a bartender at Washington’s Service Bar. “FEW Immortal Rye is distinctive spicy rye whiskey is proofed to bottling strength with a delicate and fruity 8 Immortals oolong tea. The resulting whiskey provides an array of complimentary flavors for a traditional Thanksgiving meal including honeyed vanilla, peach, and baking spice notes.”

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