With our american cousins celebrating Thanksgiving and Christmas just around the corner, we thought it was the perfect time to punt some ideas on wine matches with turkey.


Thanksgiving turkey


For roast turkey we would suggest weighty whites, such as Brézème or light to medium-bodied reds – Fred Filliatreau's old-vine Saumur-Champigny springs to mind.
For a comprehensive analysis of roast turkey dishes, The Guardian's wine writer Fiona Beckett (recently anointed IWSC 'Wine Blogger of the Year 2014') wrote a great review of the difference between US and UK turkeys on her excellent website.


Painted Buildings in Alsace



What to do with the leftover turkey? A Yapp family Christmas is not complete without 'Pulled and Devilled Turkey', an 18th century dish adapted by Jane Grigson in 'English Food'. The combination of spicy dark meat and turkey breast in a creamy sauce is a winner. Most recently, pulled meats have become the new food trend in restaurants and supermarkets. In terms of food and wine matching, we would go with either a juicy, low-tannin red such as Beaujolais Villages: Cuvée de Vieilles Vignes, Le Petit Caboche or Savoie Mondeuse, or a white wine that will stand up to spices – Alsace Pinot Gris or Jasper Hill Riesling, perhaps?


Jasper Hil - Riesling - Georgias Paddock



Pulled and Devilled Turkey, Chicken or Pheasant: A Recipe by Jane Grigson:

  • 500g (1lb) Cooked Turkey Breast
  • 1 Leg and Thigh of the Turkey (preferably uncooked/pink)

Devil Sauce

  • 1 Tablespoon Dijon Mustard
  • 1 Tablespoon Mango/Peach Chutney
  • 1 Tablespoon Worcester Sauce or 1 Tablespoon of Anchovy Essence
  • 1 Teaspoon Cayenne Pepper
  • Salt
  • 2 Tablespoons Corn Oil

Pulled Sauce

  • 200g (7oz) Butter
  • 300ml (½ Pt) Double Cream
  • Lemon Juice
  • Salt
  • Pepper
  • Chopped Parsley

1. Pull the breast meat apart into pieces roughly 4cm long, until you end up with thread-like pieces. Strip the brown meat off the bones; divide into larger pieces than the breast meat.
2. Mix the devil sauce ingredients together and chop up any large pieces of fruit in the chutney. Dip the brown pieces of meat into the devil sauce. After, place the pieces of brown meat onto a foil-lined grill pan and grill under a high heat until the meat is brown and crisp.
3. For the pulled sauce, melt the butter in a frying pan, stir in the cream and let it boil for a couple of minutes. Keep stirring until you end up with a thick, rich sauce. Next, add the pulled breast meat to the sauce, stirring until the pieces are thoroughly heated through. Season to taste with lemon, salt and pepper. Place onto the centre of a serving dish with the devilled bits surrounding it.
4. Serve with homemade bread or a simple salad.