Wine & Food pairing can be a complicated art but we have put together a few basic guidelines to enhance the food on your table.
Drink and Eat what you like.
Choose a wine you love or a wine you’d like to try then if the food pairing doesn’t exactly work, at least you have a great choice of wine.
- Look for Balance – Match the food and wine by weight
- Match the wine to the most prominent element in the dish
Sweet dishes (this could include desserts but also shrimp, scallops) call for wines that are at least of equal sweetness or the food will strip the wine of its flavor. White Zinfandels, many Rieslings and Port are great pairings with desserts. Fresh fruit is delicious with Riesling, chocolate desserts with a vintage Port.
Salty dishes need wines with low tannins, crisp acidity and some fruitiness. Fresh oysters would be an excellent pair with a Sauvignon Blanc or the classic pairing of Champagne & Cavier. A burger with a side of ketchup would be tasty with a Riesling.
Tart foods work well with flavorful, crisp white wines like Chardonnay or lighter bodied red wines. Hot & sour soup would pair nicely with a Riesling.
Serve spicy food with lightly sweet, very fruity and aromatic with low tannins and/or crisp wines like a Sauvignon Blanc, Riesling or Gewrztraminer. A spicy curry is fantastic with Riesling, or Spicy seared Tuna with Pinot Noir.
Serve rich, full flavored dishes with full flavored, full bodied and higher acidity wines. Think of a juicy steak paired with a Cabernet Sauvignon.
Fish & Game
Try these with very fruity, full-bodied, high acid wines or medium sweet wines like a Pinot Noir with Salmon
Smoked foods overpower all but the fruitiest, richest wines. Low tannin, extremely rich, and/or moderately sweet wines are best here, something like a Merlot or try a grilled smoky mozza cheese sandwich with a lighty oaked Sauvignon Blanc
Cheese and wine are a classic food pairing. Ensure you match the weight of the cheese to the wine. Try Port with Blue Cheese or an Icewine with aged Gouda.