Whether you are organizing a dinner party, ordering from a menu, or preparing a romantic meal, you will want to find an excellent wine to pair with your food. If you put much effort into your food, put the same effort into selecting the best wine.
Pairing food and wine is simple, but there are a lot of choices available. For that reason, below is a list of fantastic food and wine pairs to help you make your selections. If you are unsure of how to come up with the pair, here are three rules to abide by:
- Match texture and weight: when you select a light meal, pair it with a light wine. However, if it is a rich meal, it goes handy with a glass of rich wine
- Let flavors compliment or contrast each other. Pair sweet and salty or fruity. This also works well with textures when a sharp, acidic wine cuts through cream sauce’s richness
- Match the wine and food flavor intensity. One of the two should take the lead while the other follows closely
Let’s look at some suitable pairings with wine and food.
Barbecue and Zinfandel
Barbecue is everyone’s favorite, and it can be spicy and bold. However, it needs to be paired with a glass of matching intense wine, and Zinfandel is the best combination to offer the balance. Zinfandel is made of grapes from California, and it is one of the few but great wines to handle barbecue intensity.
Zinfandel’s fruity, sweet and intense flavor complements the intensity found in barbecued meat. But when certain spices are involved, be careful. Some spices can be too tart while others too sweet. Zinfandel is the right wine flavor to handle the sweetness and smoke when your sauce falls in any of the two.
Chablis and Oysters
Native oysters prepared with shallot vinegar and lemon is one of the best preferences to pair with your wine cocktails & recipes. Most people prefer oysters from Chablis region soil and steely wine dryness as their purer and more reliable pairing. Other options to pair with oysters include Picpoul de Pinet and Muscadet de Sévre-et-Maine.
Sweet Chenin Blanc and Apple Tart
An apple tart is one of the most classic French-style wine-friendly desserts. It pairs well with Loire dessert wines like Quarts de Chaume and Bonnezeaux. Add cream to your dessert to bring in more flavor.
Loire Reds and Tuna
Tuna is rarely served as steak. It is a good suit for red wine rather than white. The best grape variety that works best is Loire’s Cabernet Franc. It has acidity, dryness, and fruitiness that combines well with tuna’s spicy fragrance.
Meatballs and Spaghetti Paired with Chianti
When you are making Italian meatballs for your party friends, add a glass of Chianti wine to it. Chianti wine is a red blend with fruity flavor and tomato acidity.
Bordeaux and Lamb Chops
There are different ways of preparing your lamb chops. However, no matter which method works best for you, do not forget to serve your dish with a bottle of Bordeaux. Its bold flavor works well with lamb meat, and the dish’s fattiness will help eliminate the wine’s tannins.
Grilled Vegetables and Barbera
Barbera is one of the Italian Piemonte region’s staple table wines. It has been paired virtually with all Italian dishes. Grilled vegetables being an exception to the dishes but work incredibly with Barbera. When olive oil is drizzled on the veggies, its smoky edges contrast nicely with the wine’s sweet fruits, and thus the tensions between olive oil in the veggies and Zesty Barbera’s texture is magical.
Mourvèdre and Duck
Mourvèdre is a good pairing for duck cooked with olives in a Provençal style because of its exotic scented footprint. Other options to pair your duck with include Barbera, Pinot Noir, and Merlot.
Tomato Sauce and Sangiovese
This combination is one of the best and classic. It originates from ancient local eating. Sangiovese is an Italian-made wine from planted red grapes and daily paired with tomato sauce pasta. This pairing is classic because both tomatoes and Sangiovese are fruits with similar flavor intensity and acidity. When you pair pasta’s gentle flavor with Sangiovese wine acidity, their flavor pairs well and it will be a hit with your guests.