Pairing Basics

Choose Similar Flavors

Similar food and wine flavors complement each other.

   example: sole of lemon sauce and Sauvignon Blanc both have citrus flavors.

 

Choose Similar Weight and Texture

Similarly weighted food and wine complement each other.  Food and wine can be light, medium or heavy bodied.

   example: Lobster and Chardonnay are both medium weight and rich so they complement each other.

 

Choose the Same Sweetness Level

Wine should be equal to or higher in sugar than the dish

example: Roasted pork with apple glaze pairs beautifully with Riesling.

 

Salt Needs Crispness

Crisp wines balance salty flavors

example: A crisp Sauvignon Blanc balances salty olives and feta cheese.

 

Pair with the Sauce

Pair the wine to the sauce served

example: Light citrus sauces pair with Sauvignon Blanc and Chardonnay.

 

No Sauce?  Pair with the Meat

Match wine to meat, fish or poultry when serving without a sauce.

  example: pinot Noir tastes great with duck.

 

Spicy Foods

Sweeter wines offer relief from spicy foods

example: Riesling pairs well with Asian cuisines

 

Tannins Need Fat to Balance Out

Tannic wines such as Cabernet Sauvignon cut through the coating that far leaves in the mouth

example: Cabernet pairs great with steak