Food & Wines Pairing Rules – Food Style

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From “Perfect Pairings” A Master Sommelier’s Practical Advice fro Partnering Wine & Food – Evan Goldstein

When the food is…….

Tart

– Serve a wine which is equally sharp or even more so, or the wine will taste off and shattered

– Avoid red wine, except those of a sharper nature (Sangiovese, Pinot Noir, Gamay)

– Don’t overlook dry roses and sparkling wines as option.

Slightly Sweet

– Make certain that the wine accompanying the food shares its personality traits: choose a wine that is slightly sweet, such as Chenin Blanc, Riesling or even sake.

– If you really want a dry wine, serve one that’s young and very, very ripe.

– Remember that sometimes a wine with oak can work if the wood’s sweetness mirrors that of the dish; however, success is not guaranteed.

 

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Salty

– Pick wines with low to moderate alcohol content, as the wine’s heat will be exaggerated by the salt.

– Play with wines that have some sweetness; salt and sweet can enjoy each other’s company.

– Avoid wines with high levels of oak or tannin.

Spicy & Hot

– The spicier the dish, the more difficult it is to pair with wine. 

– Select young wines with low to moderate alcohol content, minimal (or no) oak, and if possible some residual sugar (for whites and rose).

– Among still wines, stick to off-dry whites and roses; sparkling wines can be nice foils for heat.

– You may have to forgo with 5 alarm chili or those Thai, Indian and Korean dishes that make your hair stand on end.  Opt instead for beer and yougurt based drinks, along with large bowl of rice.

Bitter

– Select wines with bitter components (oak aging, tannins) to complement the personality of the recipe.

– Try wines with high acidity.  This doesn’t work but it’s better than the opposite extreme. After all, tannin is an acid.

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Dominated by a strong sauce or condiment

– Forget the main dish and match the wine to the sauce or condiments and side dishes.

Served very hot

– Allow the dish to cool off, or it will ruin your enjoyment of the wine and make the alcohol (by heating it) seem overwhelming.

– Serve chilled wines if it’s essential that the dish be served very hot.

 

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