Tips on Food and Wine Pairing

Most people find food and wine pairing to be quite intimidating, although I find it to be very dependant on the individuals tastes. However if you are matching the food and wine and it tastes well balanced to you its always a good choice.

When choosing your wine first decide what it is you will be cooking. Will it be full flavoured? Creamy? Mild? Spicy? Or acidic? Then work on the rules below.

Always match flavourful dishes such as fish, seafood and creamy dishes with full bodied wines such as a heavy oaked chardonnay, Merlot or Gamay.

Acid wines do not match well with creamy dishes but go well when making marinated or vinaigrette based appetisers and salads or acidic dishes such as tomato based dishes or lemon juice you will need an equally acidic wine to stand up to it. Sauvignon Blanc, Pinot Grisio and other dry white wines are best suited.

Asian spicy meals are often made up of fragrant and hot spices. This can make the choice of wine quite difficult. These dishes can however be balanced between spiciness and sweetness. Match them with wines such as Gew├╝rztraminer, Riesling or dry fruity new world white wines.

Roasted lamb, grilled spice rubbed or marinated steaks, braised beef and other lamb dishes, game specialities and also earthy wild mushroom dishes and charcuterie are complemented and paired well by red wines such as Syrah, Cabinet Sauvignon, Zinfandel and Bordeaux Blends.

Matching wine and cheeses are to high in fat content or to strong to be paired with fine matured red wines. When using strong pungent tasting cheese you should use a full bodied wine, this balances out the flavour of your cheese. The stronger cheeses such as the blue vein c.heese are best paired with either a mild Gewurtztraminer, botrytized wines or ports, Madeira, Sherry and Marsala.

The stronger tasting hard cheeses such as your parmesan’s and Gruyere’s are better matched with wines such as a Shiraz, Cabinet Sauvignon or Zinfandel. These wines however should not be to refined or mature.

For the most soft and semi soft cheese, these are best paired with dry white wine such as Pinot Grigio, Sauvignon Blanc, Reisling and un-oaked Chardonnay or light red wines such as a Pinot Noir or Beaujolais.


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