NAPS Trying to decide what wine to serve with what dish?
Trust your instincts and follow a few tips from the experts,
says Sid Goldstein, author of The Wine Lovers Cookbook-Great
Recipes for the Perfect Glass of Wine.
Goldsteins first piece of advice is that there is nothing
inherently wrong with the traditional wisdom that red
wine should be served with meat and white wine with seafood
You will not be chastised by your guests, rebuked by professional
acquaintances, or snubbed by your beloved for serving a perfectly
roasted leg of lamb with a zinfandel or poached halibut with
a Chardonnay. Pairing by color is the food and wine lovers
most basic truth.
Photo courtesy fetzer.com
But the old wine rules simply werent created with todays
diverse, cross-cultural palette in mind. The changes in our
culinary repertoire have forced us to broaden the way we look
at pairing food and wine. Weve had to cast aside any steadfast
notions of what is correct and what is not. Some of the old
rules remain true as directional guidelines, but the expanding
culinary global mixing pot has dramatically changed their usefulness.
Ultimately, it is not arcane rules but personal taste and a
variety of other social and environmental elements that lead
to successful food and wine pairing. Here are some new guidelines,
suggested by Goldstein:
- 1. Spicy, salty, smoked, and more highly seasoned dishes
are best paired with fruity wines, such as a Gewurztraminer
or a Johannisberg Riesling. In reds, try Pinot Noir as it
has less bitter tannin and oak than many reds.
- Full-bodied dishes, such as stews, braised meats and poultry,
and dishes with some cream, pair very well with richer wines,
such as Chardonnay, Merlot, and Cabernet Sauvignon, since
their texture and body are similar.
- Higher-acid foods such as tomatoes and citrus fruits marry
well with wines that have good acidity, such as Sauvignon
Blanc and Zinfandel.
- When pairing sweeter foods with wine, try to make the dish
less sweet than the wine. Correct the dish with a touch of
lemon juice or balsamic vinegar if its not.
For more tips on pairing food and wine, or to order The Wine
Lovers Cookbook, visit fetzer.com.