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Thanksgiving is here… finally!  One of my favorite holidays – guiltless gluttony, crazy people who get out once a year descending on the malls and time to catch up on reading.

Thanksgiving has deep roots in Virginia, so to that end, our weekend will only include Virginia wines. 

The first observance of Thanksgiving in America was entirely religious in nature and involved no form of feasting. On December 4, 1619, a group of 38 English settlers arrived at Berkeley Plantation on the James River…a location now known as Charles City, Virginia. The charter of the group required that the day of arrival be observed as a Day of Thanksgiving to God.

pm-sparkling-smallAlthough we did have Thanksgiving lunch at an in-laws restaurant on Thanksgiving Day, we are having ‘our’ Thanksgiving dinner at home on Saturday night.  The prelude to Thanksgiving included take-out sushi and a Prince Michel Sparkling Blanc de Noir.  Prince Michel Vineyard and Winery, located in the heart of Virginia wine country, is one of the oldest, most recognized and largest wineries in Virginia (about 40,000 cases annually). 

Prince Michel Sparkling Blanc de Noir

$21/bottle.  12.5% alcohol.  Crafted in the true ‘Methode Champenois.’  Green apple, pear and toast on the nose.  Aside from the dry brut, the apple is prominent on the palate.  I’ve had a number of Virginia sparkling wines and this is one of my favorites.  Given the wide distribution of Prince Michel, this is fairly easy to find in large wine stores. 

The oldest and most traditional way to make sparkling wine was supposedly developed by Dom (Pierre) Perignon, a Benedictine Monk in the Champagne district of France, born in 1638, and is known as Méthode Champenoise.