With Thanksgiving a few days away, finding the perfect wine to serve during dinner can be time consuming for anyone. Whether you are looking for a full-bodied red to serve during your dinner, or a rich white wine to pair with appetizers and desserts, Texas wines have so much to offer.
Here are 10 Texas wines you should look for at your local grocery store that will pair well with your holiday dinner:
2018 Haak Vineyards Ensaio BDB dry, $19
Haak Vineyards provides a refreshing wine to help kick off your Thanksgiving. Filled with rich melon and pineapple notes, Ensaio has a rich finish to help you enjoy the day cooking, munching on smooth cheeses or citrusy desserts. You can learn more about this wine at haakwine.com.
2019 Calais Winery Cuvee du Rocher Reserve, $36
Like most sauvignon blancs, this light-bodied wine offers prominent citrusy aromatics yet it is elevated and finished with ripe pear, apricot and gooseberry notes. Pair this buttery sauvignon blanc with herb-filled sides, such as stuffing and soft cheese appetizers or an apple pie to finish off your Thanksgiving dinner. You can learn more about this wine at calaiswinery.com.
2018 Brennan Vineyards Roussanne, $18
This roussanne is the perfect wine to pair at your table with hearty root vegetables and roasted turkey or ham. The wine offers notes of gala apples, papaya, dry mango and key lime for a crisp and sturdy finish. You can learn more about this wine at brennanvineyards.com.
2018 Duchman Family Winery Vermentino, $26
With so many new normals in 2020, you might want to switch up your Thanksgiving dinner by adding some seafood options. If you are looking for a wine pairing to suit your needs or to add flavor to any herb-filled dish, try this award winning vermentino. You can learn more about this wine at duchmanwinery.com.
2019 Landon Winery Viognier, $20
No holiday meal is complete without dessert. If you are in search of a light-bodied wine to pair with your fruit tarts and pies, this Viognier will do any dessert justice. With a peach, melon, wet stone and citrus flavors, finish off your Thanksgiving dinner with this creamy wine. You can learn more about this wine at landonwinery.com.
2017 Bending Branch Winery Cabernet Sauvignon, $50
This 2017 vintage of cabernet sauvignon has tasting notes of vanilla, red currant, black plum, leather, copper, figs, cinnamon, black pepper and warm herbs to fill the palate with a rich, intense finish. You can pair this cabernet sauvignon with red meats and sides with heavy herb influences. You can learn more about this wine at bendingbranchwinery.com.
2017 Pedernales Cellars TX Malbec, $40
It doesn't feel like a holiday dinner without a perfect Malbec to pair it with. With notes of plum, black cherry, currants, violets, earth and rosemary, this award winning Malbec by Pedernales Cellars can be a lovely pair for roasted meats and light cheese appetizers. You can learn more about this wine at pedernalescellars.com.
2017 Kuhlman Cellars Zinfandel, $34
The savory characteristics of this zinfandel will pair perfectly with your Thanksgiving Turkey, and any other lighter meats at your dinner table. If you are a fan of lighter-bodied wines, this zinfandel will provide notes of roasted berries, dried cranberry and black tea leaves. You can learn more about this wine at kuhlmancellars.com.
2013 Bending Branch Winery Tannat EM, $45
Bending Branch Winery
Amplify the rich taste of any holiday meal with this Texas tannat. Your savory dinner options, such as roasted meats and salty entrees, will happily pair with the acidity and notes of cola, spearmint, cedar and violets with this tannat. You can learn more about this wine at bendingbranchwinery.com.
2017 Kuhlman Cellars Reserve Merlot, $38
Looking for a Merlot to pair well with with a holiday roast? This classic French merlot is filled with rich aromas and significant notes of fresh figs and plums. Pair this wine with all of your favorite holiday meats such as ham, turkey or hearty sides. You can learn more about this wine at kuhlmancellars.com.
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Timmy and Tommy are ready to play.
As the 2-month-old white-and-tabby brothers swat feather wands, chase toys and generally hold court inside Purr-fecto Cat Lounge, a half-dozen potential adoptive parents look on lovingly, trying to get their attention.
“This is kind of like the speed dating of cats,” said Lupita Foster, owner of Purr-fecto Cat Lounge. “I intentionally didn’t put in any tables. That’s why we call it a lounge instead of a cat café because we have these lounge areas where you can sit and relax and cuddle.”
Foster, who has owned a cleaning company, Enviromaids, for 18 years, was inspired to open Purr-fecto Cat Lounge after adopting her own cat, Romeo, from a local shelter.
“When you want to adopt a cat, you have to spend a lot of time with them to get their personality,” Foster said. “I wanted to do something to help the community and something that makes me feel good, that warms my heart. A business with a purpose. This was a perfect idea.”
Actually, a purr-fect idea.
Inspired in part by a cat lounge she visited in Los Angeles, Foster began laying the groundwork for the business in late 2021 and officially opened the doors of Purr-fecto Cat Lounge, located at 2300 S. Lamar Blvd., in July 2022. Since then, she’s worked with rescue organizations such as Fuzzy Texan Animal Rescue and Sunshine Fund Cat Rescue to facilitate nearly 100 cat adoptions.
At any given time, there are 10-15 cats living in the space, which features an ideal blend of calm, cool corners and adorably Instagrammable backdrops with phrases such as “I want to spend all my 9 lives with you.”
Lina Martinez, 32, learned about Purr-fecto Cat Lounge from a friend’s Instagram post and made an appointment to visit two days later.
“My first impression was, ‘AWW!’” Martinez said. “The kittens were to die for. I felt happy and at peace – just what I needed.”
Visitors to the cat lounge pay $15 for a 30-minute CATXperience session or $30 for a 70-minute session that is spent getting to know the personalities of each cat. Foster said the first thing she typically sees from visitors to the lounge is a smile.
“Everybody that enters the door is smiling,” she said. “And we’ve seen people who have cried because they can’t have kids and they decide to go and adopt a cat instead.”
Foster said she loves bringing in cats who might not have a chance to be adopted at traditional shelters. She told the story of one cat named Izzy, who was partially blind, who was adopted by a family that had a deaf cat at home.
“Izzy was not going to get adopted anywhere else, but she’s extremely beautiful,” she said. “If she was in a cage in a rescue and you tell people she’s blind, she was probably going to be overlooked. But visiting our space, she doesn’t seem like she’s blind. She knows her way around. She moves around perfectly.”
Although Martinez, who had been casually looking for a pet to adopt since moving to Austin nearly four years ago, was interested in a cat named Ruby that she had seen on Purr-fecto’s social media, at the lounge she instead found herself drawn to 5-month-old mixed breed Tuxedo cat.
“I thought he was a star,” she said. “He worked the room and introduced himself to everyone. When I laid down to pet Ruby, he ran from the other side of the room and cuddled with me. It was game over. He got me.”
And she, of course, got him, complete with a commemorative photo that read “My Furrever Family” the day she took him home. Although his original name was Emmanuel, she renamed him Sullivan after her favorite DJ.
“Purr-fecto is special because of the amount of effort and love they put into taking care of the cats,” Martinez said, “and finding them good homes and making possible adopters feel at home.”
Foster, who spent a recent Thursday hosting a group of teenagers in foster care at the lounge, several of whom expressed interest in working there, said the best part about her new endeavor is that her heart is always full.
“I just feel complete,” she said. “I always felt as an entrepreneur that I was missing something. I knew I accomplished a lot, but in my heart I was missing a little connection with the community. Now I’m creating connections between humans and pets and that’s amazing. I’m creating family bonds. It’s just about love, you know. And we need that.”
We all have those cravings for an amazing butter chicken or some authentic dosas with coconut chutney, but when I was thinking about where I wanted to go to satisfy my taste buds I realized that my list of great Indian food around Austin was surprisingly short. After doing some research and asking around, here is your list of the best Indian restaurants around town.
This restaurant claims to have the most authentic South Indian food, and from what I've heard, the claims might be true! Their menu features the traditional South Indian dishes of Idlis, Vadas, a variety of Dosas, and more.
If you're looking for an Indian and Tex-Mex fusion cozy restaurant, then look no further! Nasha on East 7th Street prides itself on its specialty margaritas, Tikka con Queso, Biryani, and more creative dishes!