Monthly Archives: November 2015

5 Tips For Ideal Wine And Food Pairing

Whenever you match your meals with wine, this can turn out to be a very rewarding experience. In as much as it can be overwhelming and confusing trying to decide which is the best wine when facing a wall of wine, there are five secrets which can help you identify which one is best.

The primary goal will be identifying the wine that accentuates the both the flavors in the wine and food. You need not be an expert to do this. Just follow the steps below and you can be on your way to cooking food with wine like a pro.

Watch Your Weight

This refers to the weight of the food, not yours. The easiest way for you to identify a good combination is comparing like with like. For instance, if you are preparing a light dish, then the wine will have to be light. Alternatively, if the dish has varying flavors, weight and spice, then you will have to select the wine that can match up to such food.

Wines such as Vernaccia or Muscadet will go well with light foods such as salads, veggies and delicate white fish, but for those which are a bit more complicated, you can use Chardonnay for the white and probably Pinot Noir for the red.

In the case of bigger, heavier, and richer flavors such as T-bone steaks or lasagna, then red wine with big tannis will be able to accommodate those varying tastes and at the same time still retain that sweet taste. Here, you might consider using Malbec, Cabernet Sauvignon or Zinfandel wines.

Match Wine with Sauce


Truth be told, most dishes require some sort of sauce including that grilled steak which is usually accompanied by béarnaise. Thus, instead of using fish, meat or chicken to pair with your wine, you can consider using sauce. This means that you will need a rich wine to stand up to the saucy creamy richness that is in chicken Florentine such as a Burgundian Macon which has a bit of oak ageing.

Color Coding

If you are running out of time, this can be the best option available. By simply looking at the wine, you can be able to ascertain what it will pair easily with. For example, a light bright wine featuring hints of green would blend well with dishes such as light white fish, lettuce salads or even fresh green vegetables.

Alternatively, white wine with hints of gold or deep lemon color would blend well with dishes having more weight such as caper sauce or lemon butter.

To prevent the food or the wine dominating, you can use light reds with the lighter flavors in dishes such as butter squash risotto. For robust foods such as steaks and stews, you can use the dark wines.

Spice of Life

Since everyone loves a good Chinese or Thai meal every now and then, you can decide to use a contrasting wine if it has a slight pinch of spicy heat to avoid ruining the spices present. Thus, you can consider adding a touch of sweetness with wine such as Riesling Splatlese or Gewurztraminet to reduce the heat without ruining the flavor of your wine.

You should keep away from those big tannic reds which have the effect of accentuating the spices and ruining the flavor of the wine.

Back to the Land

The last trick you can use which is almost as old as wine itself is preparing traditional food to match the wines much in the same way that places like Italy do.

The most important thing when it comes to food and wine pairing is much the flavors. Thus, by following the above tips, you can avoid getting overwhelmed and confused when planning how to match the two when entertaining guests.