There is an old saying, one in which we wholeheartedly agree: “As long as we have wine, the holidays will be fine.” That said, while we love holiday feasting, let’s admit that it can be stressful to choose the perfect wine and then pair it just right. We decided to lend a hand and relieve some stress, so you can focus on the fun.
Here are some wines to bring in the New Year. What’s more, these wines make fabulous gifts for hosts. We’ve also put together pairing suggestions for scrumptious holiday dishes, from Grandpa’s famous loaded potatoes, to your best friend’s extra-garlicky shrimp. Pssst: Sparkling wine is great with leftover stuffing!
Cheers to loved ones, delicious food, local wine and plenty of holiday gaiety.
Seven Hills Winery 2018 Walla Walla Cabernet Sauvignon
The terroir really shines through this Cab, and it’s a great example of why Walla Walla is legendary for the varietal. Grippy tannins, velvety texture, rich fruit and layered spicy notes make it a great wine to sip in front of a crackling fire. Serve this earthy wine with your main dish: turkey with stuffing, baked chicken, mushroom gratin or even roasted root vegetables.
$30 | 14.6% ABV
Cristom 2019 Eola-Amity Hills Chardonnay
This creamy sipper offers lots of layered green apple and peach notes, bright acidity and a long, savory finish. With soft oak and a saline minerality, this Chardonnay is multi-layered and complex. Serve slightly chilled with scallop fettuccine, seafood paella or wild mushroom risotto as a nice complement to the wine’s salinity.
$40 | 13.0% ABV
WillaKenzie Tourdion 2019 Yamhill
–Carlton Cuvée Blanc
This expressive wine is a blend of Pinot Noir, Pinot Blanc and Pinot Gris. With a strong citrus character, Tourdion is full-bodied, energetic and exceptionally food-friendly. It makes for a great party starter, and pairs amazingly with light bites and appetizers — smoked salmon blinis, bruschetta, goat cheese tarts, oysters, you name it!
$40 | 13.9% ABV
10,000 Hours by Aquilini 2019 Red Mountain Syrah
Brimming over with tobacco, sage, clove and chocolate, earthy spices are driven with a powerful structure in this burgundy-hued beauty. Laden with spices and herbs, this bottling needs a gamey, meaty dish to match its weight. Think: steak frites, crispy-skinned duck or ginger-tamari tofu.
$35 |15% ABV
Browne Family Vineyards 2018 Walla Walla Medallion Series Dottie Chardonnay
Bursting with ripe grapefruit, lemon zest and sticky toffee pudding, this vibrant wine is a must-have for any holiday table. It is particularly good with cheese, which makes it great to serve for drawn-out snacking and lounging over appetizers. Pair this with a charcuterie and cheese board, and you’re sorted for the evening. Happy grazing!
$50 | 14.0% ABV
Troon Vineyard 2020 Applegate Valley Pét Nat Sparkling
We’re all for good puns and great wine, and this vibrant Pét-nat scores on both counts. This glowing gold bubbly is made from estate-grown Tannat. Lemon and chamomile aromas lead to deep umami and herbal flavors. This zesty wine is all about joy, and is the perfect bottle to crack open at the stroke of midnight to usher in the New Year. Pair with chocolate-dipped strawberries, wasabi peas and candied nuts!
$35 | 10.5% ABV
Dobbes Family Estate 2020 Elements Willamette Valley Brut
This delicious sparkler is perfect for New Year’s Eve soirées. Tropical fruit flavors like lychee and dragon fruit are enlivened with fresh, zippy acidity and clean minerality. The ultimate pairing would be butter-seared lobster. Other indulgent options include truffled almonds and saffron risotto. Bon appétit!
$30 | 12.1% ABV
Goose Ridge 2018 Cougar VIII WSU Red Blend
This special red blend leads with Grenache, Syrah and Mourvedre. An explosion of dark fruit on the nose leads to a palate that comes alive with notes of cocoa, raspberry, vanilla and lavender. The muscly, bold wine pairs perfectly with festive fare — succulent turkey, grilled lamb, baked potatoes, etc. It is also really good with non-traditional, spicier holiday fare — think five-spice chicken, Szechuan tofu or spicy dan dan noodles.
$40 | 14.2% ABV
Helioterra 2016 Columbia Valley Mourvedre
Sandalwood, blackberries and violets make for a heady bouquet leading to meaty, peppery flavors. This full-bodied, robust wine calls for a rich, meaty dish to pair with — roast beef and roast chicken are great options. For vegetarians, pair it with portobello mushroom sliders or a hearty eggplant moussaka.
$34 | 14.2% ABV
Brooks 2019 Eola-Amity Hills Sparkling Muscat
The Muscat reveals a creamy, rich wine that’s intensely fruity and sippable. Aromas bring tangerine, lemon rind and orange blossom. All that citrus pairs fabulously with luxurious cheeses like brie, camembert and raclette. Another decadent pairing? Chocolate. Try it with chocolate fondue, a fluffy mousse or a rich, velvety chocolate cake.
$35 | 12.5% ABV