This Thanksgiving, we’re finding our holiday inspiration in a classic French tradition: the bustling French markets. Our Thanksgiving Guide details everything you need to create a warm, relaxed celebration of your own, including fresh recipes from our French Market Menu. It’s a cultural celebration bound to be as effortless as it is elegant.
Mireille Guiliano, best-selling author of French Women Don’t Get Fat: The Secret of Eating for Pleasure, shares her tips on how to host a French fête.
- Entertaining is about giving pleasure and bringing people together. Popping a cork off Champagne – the wine of celebrations – certainly sets a festive mood. However, make the apéritif cocktail time simple and short, and never offer drinks without food (something as simple as nuts and olives will do).
- Place and table settings matter, even with family, as they can signal a special occasion and set a tone. Dress a nice table – which, to me, means a real tablecloth and real napkins.
- Flowers are always part of entertaining at our home. I often use them to follow the theme, and for Thanksgiving, a small pot of fall-color mums is enough, as well as some mini pumpkins available at farmers’ markets. Place them on the table or even on a piece of furniture in the room, with an orange candle.
- Your role as hostess is to make sure everybody has a good time. It’s all about giving and the guests. Don’t keep guests in one configuration for too long. Consider changing places with your partner at some point, or at dessert time, suggest a casual change to make the whole process smooth and natural.
With our fresh French twist on a Thanksgiving menu, why not try a few old-world French wines with earthy tones?
- Riesling from Alsace has just enough body to stand up to many dishes.
- Rosé from the Lubéron shows lovely fresh fruit and briny minerality without overpowering the food.
- Pinot Noir from Burgundy is an all-around winner with a delicate balance of red fruit and earth.
- A Syrah blend from the Rhône Valley adds dark fruit with smoke and spice.
- Learn more with our wine series with Master Sommelier, Andrea Robinson