Red goes with steak, white goes with fish. Easy isn’t it? While this may be tried and true, there are plenty of other wine and food pairings for the adventurous. We asked the experts and here’s what they recommend pairing food with wine for a delicious mix every time.
3 simple rules to follow
Adam Nicholls giving up her busy life to pursue her dream of owning a food and wine business. His private travel agency, Wine Compass, has organized more than 1000 tours throughout the Mornington Peninsula and the Yarra Valley. He gave us 3 simple rules to get started with food and wine pairing:
“There are a lot of complicated rules and different opinions when it comes to food and wine pairing. For everyday drinkers, it can be hard to remember long lists of complicated rules and combinations. But with a few simple rules, you have a rewarding food and wine pairing experience
1. Make sure the wine is no bigger than the food, either in taste or weight. There’s no point in draining your food with too much wine.
2. Remember that wine has great properties to enhance the taste of food: acids cut through fats and tannins bind to proteins, so you can match based on structure, not taste if you prefer.
3. The simplest rule, of course, is to match the color of your wine to your food colour. For example, lighter white wines go with fish and deep reds go with a large, juicy steak.”
You can find Adam’s series of wine pairing tips here, or follow them on Facebook and Instagram.
Only fools underestimate champagne
Natalie Pickett is a champagne lover and expert from The Bubbles Review. She shared with us some tips on how to properly pair champagne with meals.
“Champagne as a celebratory drink is well known, yet many people don’t realize that champagne is the ideal accompaniment to a full meal and not just for welcome bubbles. Champagne’s acidity makes it a perfect palate cleanser and goes well with many favorite foods.
– Fried food – perfect with fish and chips
– Creamy foods; eggs – that’s why breakfast with champagne is the perfect way to celebrate a Sunday
– Cheese – especially creamy French cheese
– Mushrooms, Chicken and Seafood
Champagne blends using red grapes can also go well with red meat dishes.
Stay away from blue cheeses, tomato-based dishes, and spicy foods as they can counteract the acidity.
– The different styles in bubbly Aussie and Proseccos can be made more fruity – try these with Italian style dishes.
A good glass of champagne with the right food can be god-sent, try different concoctions, explore different wines and enjoy the night! “
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Drink boldly, be brave
We asked a passionate alcohol educator Virginia Jacobs from Wine Taste Chat to share how she pairs wines with her meals.
“More important is the meat. When pairing food and wine, don’t just look at the meat or protein you plan to eat, but look at;
Cooking method: A barbecue grill will pair better with a brandy than a boiled or steamed dish will go well with a more delicate wine.
Smell: Any condiments or sauces in the dish, tomato olives and anchovies, Middle Eastern, light cream sauces or fiery curries. Work with the most dominant flavors in food without worrying about every ingredient or garnish.
Think of salmon as an example, a salmon fillet boiled with Pinot Gris or the same salmon, sautéed and served with a soy mushroom sauce would go well with Pinot Noir.
Let’s be a little bold, what’s the worst that can happen? Try an unusual wine or a wine you’ve never tried before. Probably a test run before your guests arrive. Have a spare bottle just in case.
Ask the bartender or bartender for a recommendation. Some restaurants have suggested wines to match the menu, and trying them out can help you understand why they go well together. It’s all about the balance that really matches the intensity of the dish with the wine, or vice versa if you have a particular wine that you want to drink and need to pair with the food. “
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Tips for your next dinner party
Invest in the right wine accessories
Store your wine properly and it will love you for it. Most wines should be kept at room temperature and in the dark until they are ready to be opened. Closed bottles should always be stored on the side because storing them upright will dry out the stopper and allow air to get in. Wine racks provide secure storage for all your bottles and can be easily hidden in cool, dark areas like under stairs, a corner of the pantry or in the garage.
Even if you have the right storage, a bottle that hasn’t been active for too long is better with some extra TLC. If you have a particular wine you’re saving, decan it an hour or so before your meal. This will separate the residue from the wine and means that only the finest drops will reach your glass. It’s also a quick fix for cork straining if you’re having trouble opening the door before guests arrive! Pour the wine through the sieve into the decanter, then put it back in a separate bottle. Repeat until the cork is removed and served in your stylish decanter. It will be our little secret.
Unfinished a delicious bottle? Find yourself a wine or champagne cork and keep the contents fresh for another 7-10 days so you can enjoy it another night. Find everything you need and more in MyDeal home and garden.
A good wine doesn’t need a fancy meal
Wine is often thought of as a pleasurable experience, but it is equally enjoyable in a casual setting. Just because you have a stylish bottle doesn’t mean you have to pair it with a 6-course degreasing meal. If you want to have a relaxed BBQ or steak night with friends then go ahead. Match your wines using tips from our experts and bring the party out with your deck furniture to help everyone relax.
Armed with all this knowledge, we think you’ll be ready to pair wines like a pro in no time. If you’re still unsure, check out our beginner’s wine guide with more expert tips.