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Recommended Wines

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Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Here are suggestions for red, white and sparkling wines with Thanksgiving dinner. In each category is a splurge, a moderately priced selection and a local option.

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RED

Paraiso Pinot Noir 2006
**
California, $25

This is a nicely balanced pinot noir from the Santa Lucia Highlands, with cherry and plum flavors accented by smoke from wood aging. It tastes a tad sweet, which should make it ideal for Thanksgiving.

Country Vintner: available at Rodman's, Calvert Woodley and Morris Miller in the District; at Evo Bistro in McLean.

Produttori di Govone Barbera d'Alba Superiore 2005
**
Italy, $14
(Good Value)

Barbera is an exceptionally food-friendly and versatile grape, and this classically styled Piedmont wine offers earthy, mushroom and soy flavors and a slightly tannic finish. Fine now, and should age well for at least two or three years.

Dionysus: available at all area Balducci's locations, Whole Foods in the District and Virginia, Iron Bridge Wine in Columbia and Warrenton, Va., and Unwined in Alexandria.

Barboursville Cabernet Franc Reserve 2006
**
Virginia, $23

Consistently one of Virginia's best reds, this wine loves to play hard to get. To coax it into revealing its potential, decant two hours before mealtime, then after an hour pour it into another decanter.

Country Vintner in the District: available at Calvert Woodley, Wine Specialist and Paul's of Chevy Chase. Republic National in Virginia: available at Arrowine in Arlington, Unwined in Alexandria and various Whole Foods Markets.

WHITE

Vision Cellars Blanc Gris 2007
**
California, $20

A blend of sauvignon blanc and pinot gris, this almost masquerades as Riesling. It smells of fresh peaches, canned peaches and peach compote; its full mouth feel and touch of residual sugar pairs well with fruit and spice flavors in Thanksgiving fare.


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