How to Pair Your Favorite Holiday Dishes With the Perfect Wine

Last Update: April 4, 2024

As we enter the holiday season, celebrating the simple things — like family, good food, and a perfectly paired glass of wine — feel all the more important. This year, we want to help you make your celebrations even more special by pairing your organic wines like a pro. 

We asked Josh Nadel, Thrive Market’s Master Sommelier, for his best holiday wine pairings. From roasted chicken to green bean casserole, here’s how to choose the perfect red, white, or bubbly to go with just about every dish on the table. 

Wines to Pair With Poultry

Cabernet Franc 

Try: Frédéric Moureau Les Trois Terres Chinon 2019

“The reds of the central Loire offer bright, refreshing wines, which don’t rely on oak for flavor or texture,” Min says. “Chinon is the touchstone for the best wines of the region, with substance, zip, and crunch — and that’s what we’ve got here. It’s versatile enough to weave between all sorts of prep and flavors, with a texture to keep you coming back for another sip between every bite.”

Chenin Blanc

Try: Tulbagh Mountain Vineyards Chenin Blanc 2019
“For whites alongside poultry, with the corresponding myriad of preparations (roasted, seasoned, grilled, rubbed…), you need a bit of body, and a mouthfeel that doesn’t fight with flavors, but rather, complements them. This unoaked Chenin Blanc does just that.”


Try: Jean Boisselier Brouilly Gamay 2019
“Turkey isn’t the fattiest and most tender meat in the world, no matter how you slice it. Gamay (the grape that makes the wines of the Beaujolais region of France) provides bright, fruity, and fresh reds with a sneaky crisp mouthfeel, and is a classic pairing with turkey. Brouilly is one of the best villages to grow Gamay in the region, and 2019 was a fantastic vintage.”

Rhone Valley white blends

Try: EthicDrinks White Rhone Blend 2020
“The red wines of the Rhone Valley are far more well known than its whites; however, the whites are just as delicious! This is a softer, rounder white wine with ripeness and balance — think chardonnay with more flavor and less oak, or the opposite of sauvignon blanc, which is more crisp and citrus.”

Wines to Pair With Seafood

Crisp whites

Try: Terra Mundi Albariño
“Albariño is grown almost exclusively in northern Portugal and the Galician coast of Spain. It’s light-bodied; pleasantly, but not overwhelmingly aromatic; and crisp, without being overly mouth-watering. Think Pinot Grigio with a bit more going on.”

Medium-bodied whites

Try: Kattalage Assyrtiko
“It’s not surprising that a wine grown in the midst of the Aegean sea would be on the top of our list for wines to pair with seafood! Assyrtiko, while it is probably unfamiliar, is Greece’s finest white grape and one of the great grapes of the Mediterranean. This version is light-medium bodied, brisk, lightly fruited, and full of sea spray and minerality — no oak.”

Wines to Pair With Beef


Try: Freehome Shiraz 2020
“Shiraz and red meat are a match made in heaven — especially with a few years in the bottle! This is a classic example brimming with flavor, Aussie sunshine, and in a fantastic drinking window. Full bodied, but soft and velvety.”

Cabernet Sauvignon

Try: Telegraph Road Cabernet Sauvignon 2018
“Washington State has an embarrassment of riches when it comes to growing conditions for Cabernet Sauvignon. This example is superbly balanced, (there’s a pinch of Merlot in here to round out the wine) and is a textbook example of what has made Cabernet the most popular red wine around the world. Well integrated, new French oak adds complexity and depth.”

Wines to Pair With Pork

Medium-bodied reds

Try: Les Cepas Costalarbol Rioja 2019
“We’ve been working with Costalarbol for a few vintages now, and the wines always deliver. For pork, we recommend medium-bodied reds with food-loving texture, which allow the far flung flavors that inevitably accompany these dishes to shine. This ripe Spanish red pops against all sorts of pork dishes and preparations, whether it’s a spice rub, glaze, chops, loins, or sausages.”


Try: Madonnabruna Rosso Piceno Cugnolo 2019
“For those of us who love Chianti and other central Italian reds, this red from the Adriatic coast offers a slightly darker, richer wine. The wine features a small addition of Montepulciano blended with our good friend, Sangiovese (the grape that makes Chianti and the bulk of Tuscan reds), which dials up the strength and color a touch, but keeps things drinkable.”

Wines to Pair With Vegetarian Mains

Cabernet Franc 

Try: Arnaud Lambert Les Villaises 2019
“Reds with veggie dishes can be tricky; there’s so much freshness and flavor to think about on that plate! This Cabernet Franc shows savory elements that echo the flavors of your favorite veggies, alongside its medium body and wild red fruit. Arnaud Lambert is a star producer.”

Crisp whites

Try: Tenuta dell’Ugolino Verdicchio Classico Piaole
“Verdicchio is a wine we should all be drinking more of. It’s often served alongside fresh, light seafood and veggies on its home turf, the Adriatic coast of Italy. It complements freshness and the myriad savory flavors of veggies without overbearing citrus, oak, or weight.”

Wines to Pair with Mashed Potatoes 


Try: Mas Paillet Chardonnay-Viognier 2021
“Soft and round complements soft and round. This medium-bodied white has a smooch of extra flavor from the viognier in the blend. No judgments for having mashed potatoes and a glass (or two) of this wine for your full meal!”

Wines to Pair With Stuffing 

Grenache and/or Syrah

Try: Domaine Roche-Audran Cotes du Rhone Nature 2020
“When it comes to pairing wine with earthy, terrestrial flavors, we go forth unafraid with the wines of France’s Southern Rhône Valley and Provence. This wine was made without the addition of sulfur, preserving the wild aromas of this bold blend.”

Wines to Pair With Mac & Cheese

Medium-bodied reds

Try: Lucia Toscano Rosso
“What is mac and cheese after all? That’s right — it’s pasta! Medium-bodied and juicy with freshness to cut through all that queso, this member favorite is light enough on its feet for lunch, or for an epic day-after of sandwiches and leftovers.”

Wines to Pair With Green Bean Casserole

Juicy reds

Try: Grey Zorro Carménère 2019

“Chile has hung its red wine hat on the Carmenere grape, which has an uncanny profile of dark, juicy fruits, a soft middle, and aromas of fresh herbs and green bits. Perfect for your casserole, no matter the recipe of choice!”

Wines to Pair With Cranberry Sauce

Bold reds

Try: Cibolo Monastrell 2019
“We like bold, ripe, and sun-drenched reds with our cranberry sauce — something to tame the sweet-tart energy of this super healthy and seasonal berry. Monastrell is grown only in the sunniest wine growing regions of the Mediterranean, which should provide context for the rich flavors and bold presence you can expect from this Spanish red.”

This article is related to:

Clean Wine

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Lily Comba

Lily Comba has never met a baked good she didn't like. When she's not baking, you'll find her writing, taking a Pilates class, or collaborating with the editorial and social team as a Senior Content Writer at Thrive Market.

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