The Perfect Wine and Food Pairings

Partnering the flavors of your food with the characteristics of your favored wine can be a complex and tricky business. It’s all well and good serving a sumptuous meal with beautiful bottle of wine, but if the contrasting tastes don’t go well together, it will ruin both components of the meal. Here are a few serving suggestions that team some of the best wines with their ideal culinary companion.

Cabernet Sauvignon and French
Most deep, mellow red wines will match up perfectly with any classic, hearty French dishes – especially those where the key ingredient is red meat. The firm tannins and fruity flavors of a good quality cabernet sauvignon, like this bottle made by Southbrook Triomphe, would match up perfectly with a rich beef bourguignon or some slowly cooked Lamb Shanks en Papillote.

Riesling and Chinese
The soft, sweetness of an off-dry Riesling marries wonderfully with anything saucy, salty and spicy. The sugary notes in Riesling balance out the heat of the chili and the soft acidity is perfect for cutting through any sugary sauces and cleansing your palate. So next time you tuck into some Kung Pao chicken or some sweet and sour pork, try pouring a glass of Inniskillin Dry Riesling on the side.

Rosé and Italian
It can sometimes be hard to match a rosé with its perfect food partner, but there is one thing that rose compliments brilliantly – cheese. The blend of acidic white and fruity red in rosé does a brilliant job of cutting through the richness of a really cheesy pizza, or a delicious macaroni cheese. Something like this Cave Spring Dry Rosé would be the perfect tipple to go alongside your Friday night takeaway.

Indian and Pinot Grigio
If you are the kind of curry fanatic who loves to indulge in dishes at the higher end of the spice scale, like vindaloos and phaals, then it’s very difficult to suggest a wine to match. However, there are plenty of mild, beautifully flavored Indian dishes that go perfectly with certain types of wine. A chilled bottle of Pinot Grigio is wonderfully adept at cutting through any rich, coconut-laced sauces, it cleanses the palate nicely of any lingering spices and would be the perfect partner to any kind of fish curry. So grab yourself a bottle of Pondview Dragonfly Pinot Grigio next time you fancy a king prawn pathia or some tandoori salmon.

Chocolate and Port
We are often told that wine and chocolate just don’t mix well, as the bitter-sweet nature of good quality chocolate is hard to balance with the tannins in conventional wine. However, the mellow, fruity undertones of a sweet wine like port play-off beautifully with chocolate desserts. If you plan on surprising a loved one with a box of chocolate truffles this Christmas, wrap up a bottle of Graham’s Late Vintage Port and make it the perfect palatable present.