Whether you’re a wine expert or a complete novice, it’s always good to know the basics. Wine and food pairing is one of those topics that can make or break your meal – if done correctly, you’ll have an incredible experience; but if not, then you might be left feeling disappointed. In this blog post, we will discuss how to best pair wine with food so that everyone can enjoy their meal!
Here are a few rules to help you out with the best tips for combining food and wine.
Match the Quality
One of the most important considerations when pairing food and wine is to determine whether the qualities of the two are compatible. An exquisite dish, such as one served on a special occasion, works best with high-quality wines. On the other hand, matching a typical weeknight meal can work well with simple wines.
Fat in meaty dishes is what gives the meal its flavor. When pairing a fatty dish with a wine, however, you should consider the fat content and neutralize it. When you make a light dish, pair with a wine with a higher acidity like a Riesling or Pinot Noir. When cooking a heavier dish, you’ll want to pair with a wine with a lower acid content such as Merlot or Cabernet Sauvignon.
Pair Regional Dishes with Regional Wines
Pairing wines and foods of the same region is a great way that you can’t go wrong. If you’re picking a regional dish, pair it with a regional wine to celebrate the flavors of said region.
Spicy Foods and Sweet Wines
Spicy foods pair exceptionally well with wines that are a little sweet. The sweetness of the wine will help to neutralize the spiciness or heat of the food and help you to enjoy the flavor even more. Try to refrain from pairing spicy food with wines that have a high tannin content, as this can irritate the tongue and cause the mouth to dehydrate.
Match Power and Weight
A good rule of thumb when pairing food and wine for a delicious meal, is to match the power and weight of the food and wine. For example, pair heavy wines with heavy dishes. Pair soft wines with soft dishes. Pair robust wines with robust dishes and subtle wines with subtle dishes.
Consider the Ingredients in a Meal
Beyond just the protein in meat-based meals, you’ll want to consider things such as the sauce, starch, and vegetables being served with the food. This will ensure the wine complements the entirety of the dish and not just the main component.
Don’t Get Overwhelmed
Wine pairing can be a daunting task if you know nothing about wine. If this is the case, try to stick with wines that are easily paired such as Riesling or Pinot Noir. These are both versatile wines that will make great options for starting your journey in wine and food pairing!