Wine & Food Pairings

 

 

With so many wines out there it can be tough choosing the perfect wine to compliment your meal. We have put together an easy guide to help you pair like a pro. Please keep in mind that these are based off notable pairings, and this should be loosely interpreted as a “guideline” of sorts. As always, when dealing with food and wine; never be afraid to experiment!

Albariño/Alvarinho (Spanish medium-bodied white w/ high minerality)
  • Grilled fish
  • Spicy shellfish dishes
  • Roasted Vegetables
Amarone (Italian full-bodied, dry red, earthy w/ high alcohol)
  • Cheese; Aged, creamy, strongly flavored
  • Red meat; braised or roasted
  • Lamb
Asti (Italian light dry to semi-sweet sparkling wine, floral, formerly known as Asti Spumante)
  • Fresh fruit desserts
  • Cookies / Biscotti
  • Salads
Barbaresco (Italian full-bodied, flavorful red)
  • Beef; grilled, braised or roasted
  • Cheese; full-flavored or hard
  • Game & fowl
Barbera (Italian medium-bodied dry red, high acidity, fruit forward.
  • Red meat; grilled or roasted
  • Pasta; tomato sauce, pesto & rich cream sauces
  • Pizza
Bardolino (Italian light-bodied dry red wine)
  • Pasta dishes with fish or tomato sauce
  • Risotto

*Avoid fish; delicate or white

Barolo (Italian dry red, tannic & full flavored)
  • Beef; braised or grilled
  • Cheese; sharp
Beaujolais (French light-bodied, dry red)
  • Charcuterie or cold cuts
  • Chicken; grilled or roasted
  • Salads
  • Sausage
Beaujolais Nouveau (Two month old French light-bodied red, to be drank prematurely)
  • Goat cheese
  • Pasta w/ light sauce
  • Chicken or turkey
Beaujolais Villages (French light-bodied red wine, a notch above standard Beaujolais)
  • Salmon
  • Turkey
  • Cheese; Brie or Cheddar
  • Ham
Blaufränkisch (Austrian light-bodied, semi-dry red wine)
  • Chicken
  • Cream sauces
  • Lamb
  • Veggies
Bordeaux, White (French light-bodied, dry wine)
  • Fish; grilled or BBQ
  • Shellfish
  • Lobster
Brachetto (Italian sweet red sparkling wine)
  • Chocolate
  • Fruit (especially berries)
Brunello (Italian medium-bodied, dry red)
  • Cheese; aged, especially Gouda & Asiago
  • Red Meat; braised or grilled
  • Pasta with meat sauces
  • Game meat & fowl
Burgundy, Red/Pinot Noir (French light to full-bodied red, dry & fruity)
  • Beef; braised, roasted or stewed
  • Game meats
  • Mushroom dishes
  • Ham
Burgundy, White/Chardonnay (French medium to full-bodied white)
  • Chicken; roasted or poached
  • Fish
  • Lobster
Cabernet Franc (French medium-bodied red wine, earthy)
  • Beef; roasted
  • Pork w/ fruit sauce or roasted
  • Vegetables; roasted
Cabernet Sauvignon (Full-bodied red)
  • Beef; braised, grilled, or roasted
  • Cheese; Aged or extra sharp, especially Brie or Camembert
  • Lamb
  • Game & Fowl
Cava (Spanish medium-bodied sparkling, dry)
  • Fish; any, especially fried
  • Sushi
  • Tapas
Cava Rosé
  • Chinese food
  • Salmon
Chablis (French medium-bodied dry white, Chardonnay based)
  • Fish; white
  • Oysters; raw
  • Shellfish, especially shrimp & scallops
Champagne (French sparkling wine, carbonated from secondary in-bottle fermentation, usually medium-bodied)
  • Caviar
  • Egg dishes
  • Fried foods
  • Lobster
  • Oysters
  • Salmon
  • Lamb
  • Fruit
Chardonnay (Medium-bodied white, rich & complex)
  • Butter sauces
  • Chicken, especially in cream sauce
  • Crab
  • Fish; white especially with salt crust
  • Lobster
  • Scallops
Châteauneuf-du-Pape (French full-bodied red from the Rhone Valley, often spicy, dense, earthy & rich)
  • Lamb; roasted or stewed
  • Mushroom
  • Cheese; especially sharp & stinky
  • Beef
Chenin Blanc (French light to medium-bodied white, crisp & acidic)
  • Chinese cuisine
  • Sauteed fish
  • Chicken; grilled or roasted
  • Seafood
Chianti (Italian medium to full-bodied red, rustic & earthy)
  • Steak & mushrooms
  • Pasta w/ meat or tomato sauce
  • Chicken; braised, grilled or roasted
  • Pizza
Claret (Medium-bodied dry red, usually Cabernet Sauvignon based)
  • Cheese; cheddar, especially sharp
  • Lamb
  • Pork
  • Poultry
Côte du Rhône (French medium-bodied dry red, moderate tannins, dark fruit w/ slight licorice flavors)
  • Hamburgers
  • Steak/beef
  • Chicken; roasted
  • Vegetables; grilled or root
Dolcetto (Italian light to medium-bodied red wine)
  • Chicken; roasted
  • Red meat; grilled or roasted
  • Pasta w/ cheese & vegetables
Frascati (Italian light-bodied white)
  • Seafood
  • Fried fish
  • Creamy pasta dishes
Fumé Blanc/Sauvignon Blanc (New world light to medium-bodied crisp white)
  • Chicken
  • Cilantro based dishes
  • Herbal dishes
  • Fish; lightly grilled
  • Oysters
  • Seafood
  • Turkey
  • Peppers
Gamay/Beaujolais (French light-bodied dry red)
  • Charcuterie orCold Cuts
  • Chicken; roasted
  • Pork; roasted or sausage
Gavi (Italian full-bodied white)
  • Fish
  • Pasta w/ cream or pesto sauce
  • Seafood stews
Gewürztraminer (German/French medium-bodied white, dry to sweet, very aromatic w/tropical fruits & perfumed flowers)
  • Spicy cuisine
  • Asian cuisine
  • Curries
  • Cheese; strong, aged cheeses like Meunster (w/ caraway seeds) or Roquefort
  • Ginger
  • Ham
  • Turkey
  • Indian & Thai food
Grenache/Garnacha (French/Spanish medium-bodied dry red, hints of pepper w/ forward berry notes)
  • Barbecue
  • Lamb
  • Sausage
Grüner Veltliner (Austrian medium-bodied semi-dry white, fruit forward with high minerality)
  • Scallops
  • Sushi
  • Asparagus
  • Weiner Schnitzel
Ice Wine/Eiswein (German white dessert wine made from grapes that are naturally frozen on the vine, very sweet)
  • Spicy dishes
  • Often used to cleanse ones palete between courses

*Avoid Goat cheese & chocolate

Lambrusco (Italian light-bodied, sweet red wine, slightly effervescent w/ berry & cherry notes)
  • Game dishes
  • Cold cuts
  • Mildly peppery foods
Mâcon, White (French dry white from Burgundy region, 100% Chardonnay)
  • Artichokes
  • Calamari
Malbec (French Bordeaux family, primarily Argentinian grown, Full-bodied red, rich in tannins)
  • Beef;roasted or stewed
  • Lamb
  • Steak; grilled
Meritage (American medium-bodied dry red, made in the Bordeaux style, hints of dark fruit)
  • Beef
  • Duck
  • Lamb
  • Salmon
Merlot (Medium to full-bodied dry red wine, hints of currant, plum and berry)
  • Beef; grilled
  • Cheese; full flavored
Meursault (French medium to full-bodied dry white, Burgundy region, usually 100% Chardonnay)
  • Lobster
  • Shrimp
  • Risotto
Montepulciano D’Abruzzo (Italian medium-bodied dry red, chewy tannins & balanced acidity)
  • Lamb
  • Pasta w/ meat or mushroom sauce
  • Meat; grilled or roasted
Mourvèdre/Montrasell (Grown worldwide, medium to full-bodied, primary grape in red & rosé Bandol wines)
  • Liver
  • Sausage
Muscadet (French dry light-bodied white, fruit forward)
  • Mussels
  • Oysters
  • Shellfish
Muscat/Moscato (French/Italian dry to sweet full-bodied white, fragrant dessert wine w/ hints of peach, honey and very floral)
  • Biscotti
  • Fresh fruit
  • Aged cheeses
  • Dark chocolate

*Avoid milk chocolate desserts

Nebbiolo (Italian medium-bodied wine with mushroom, violet and black currant characteristics, extremely tannic)
  • Cheese
  • Red meats
  • Mushroom dishes
  • Pasta w/ meat sauce
Nero D’Avola (Italian medium to full-bodied red, low acidity)
  • Arancini
  • Meatballs
  • Red meats
Orvieto (Italian light to medium-bodied dry white, crisp& refreshing)
  • Antipasta
  • Proscuitto
  • Seafood
Pauillac (French full-bodied dry red from Bordeaux)
  • Beef
  • Cheese
  • Lamb
Petit Syrah (New world full-bodied dry red, peppery)
  • Beef
  • Cheese
  • Wild game
  • Mexican Cuisine
Pinotage (South African full-bodied dry red, earthy)
  • Barbeque ribs
  • Stew
Pinot Blanc (French medium-bodied white, crisp)
  • Chicken; especially creamy dishes
  • Oysters
  • Scallops
  • Salmon
Pinot Grigio/Pinot Gris (Italian/American light to medium-bodied white, crisp & full of citrus, Pinot Gris tends to be a fuller style)
  • Cheese; smoked
  • Chicken; grilled or poached
  • Seafood
  • Pasta w/ shellfish
Pinot Noir (light to full-bodied semi-dry red, fruit forward)
  • Lean beef
  • Chicken/Turkey; especially roasted
  • Salmon
  • Scallops
  • Lamb
  • Ham
Port (Portuguese full-bodied sweet wine, fortified)
  • Cheese
  • Chocolate
  • Dried fruits
  • Nuts
Pouilly-Fuissé (French full-bodied dry white)
  • Chicken
  • Ham
  • Shellfish
Pouilly-Fumé (French medium-bodied dry white)
  • Cheese
  • Chicken; especially creamy dishes
  • Smoked Salmon
Primitivo (Italian full-bodied dry red, genetically the same as Zinfandel, jammy)
  • Meat
  • Pasta
  • Vegetable dishes; roasted or especially spicy
Prosecco (Italian light-bodied semi-dry sparkling wine)
  • Almonds
  • Asparagus
  • Sandwiches
  • Salad
Retsina (Greek sweet white, strong w/ pine resin added during fermentation)
  • Cheese
  • Hummus
  • Olives
  • Spinach
Rhône (French medium to full-bodied red)
  • Duck
  • Lamb; roasted
  • Meats; roasted, smoked or grilled
  • Stew; beef or vegetable
Riesling (German/Alsatian light-bodied wine with varying degrees of sweetness)
  • Cheese
  • Chicken
  • Asian food
  • Apples
  • Duck
  • Curries
  • Ham; roasted & glazed
  • Mexican cuisine; especially sweet Rieslings

*Avoid heavier dishes

Rioja (Spanish medium to full-bodied red. usually consisting of Tempranillo and Garnacha)
  • Cheese
  • Lamb
  • Pork
  • Stew
  • Sautéed vegetables
Rosé/Rosato (light to medium-bodied pink to orange wine made from red grapes)
  • Charcuterie or cold cuts
  • Fish
  • Salads
  • Shrimp

*Avoid cream sauce and raw oysters

Rousanne (French full-bodied white wine from Rhône region)
  • Cheese
  • Poultry
  • Risotto
Sargantino (Italian full-bodied red from Umbria region)
  • Pasta
  • Truffles
Sake (Japanese rice wine, varying degrees of sweetness)
  • Fish; light white
  • Oysters
  • Sashimi
  • Sushi
  • Shrimp

*Avoid aged cheese and heavy dishes

Sancerre (French medium-bodied acidic wine made from Sauvignon Blanc grapes)
  • Cheese
  • Fish
  • Oysters
  • Smoked Salmon
  • Shell fish

*Avoid sweet dishes

Sangiovese (Italian medium to full-bodied red wine, Tuscan grown, the main component of Chianti, earthy)
  • Cheese; especially aged
  • Chicken; roasted or grilled
  • Pasta w/ tomato sauce
  • Steak; especially grilled
Sauvignon Blanc (New world light to medium-bodied acidic white, traditionally grown in Australia featuring heavy grapefruit notes)
  • Asparagus
  • Chicken
  • Seafood/Shellfish, especially Oysters
  • Peppers
  • Pork; grilled
  • Vegetables

*Avoid red meat & salty foods

Shiraz/Syrah (Australian/French full-bodied red, spicy pepper notes)
  • Barbeque
  • Cheese
  • Duck
  • Steak; especially grilled
  • Red meats
Soave (Italian light to medium-bodied white wine from Veneto region. usually consisting of Garganega, Verdicchio, Pinot Bianco & Chardonnay)
  • Fish; baked
  • Pasta w/ white sauces
  • Seafood
  • Pesto
  • Chicken
  • Salad
Super Tuscan (Italian full-bodied red, often consisting of Sangiovese, Cabernet, Merlot & Syrah)
  • Grilled dishes
  • Pasta w/ meat sauce
Sylvaner/Silvaner (French Alsatian/German light-bodied white, slightly acidic with minerality)
  • Quiche
  • Shellfish
  • Oysters
Tempranillo (Spanish full-bodied red, fruit forward)
  • Beef
  • Duck
  • Lamb
  • Poultry
Torrontés  (Spanish/South American medium- bodied white, quite lemony)
  • Asian, Thai & Vietnamese cuisine
  • Guacamole
  • Mexican food
Valpolicella (Italian light to medium-bodied dry red, fruit forward)
  • Chicken; grilled or roasted
  • Mexican Cuisine
  • Pasta w/ lighter sauce
  • Risotto
  • Sausage
Verdejo/Vedelho (Spanish/Portuguese medium-bodied dry white)
  • Crab cakes
  • Fish
  • Pasta salad
  • Pesto
  • Shellfish
Vernaccia (Italian medium-bodied crisp white from the Tuscan region)
  • Antipasto
  • Fish
  • Pasta w/ cream sauce
Vinho Verde (Portuguese light-bodied dry white, slightly effervescent, high acidity & minerality)
  • Calamari
  • Clams
  • Mussels
  • Pasta w/ light white sauce & shellfish
Vino Nobile di Montepulciano (Italian medium to full-bodied red made from Sangiovese)
  • Pizza
  • Chicken; roasted or grilled
  • Cheese; especially aged
Viognier (French full-bodied dry white, floral with high minerality)
  • Asian cuisine
  • Curries
  • Chicken w/ cream sauce
  • Lobster
  • Indian/Thai food
Vouvray (French medium-bodied white, varying degrees of sweetness, very food friendly)
  • Fruit
  • Scallops
  • Trout
Zinfandel (medium to full-bodied dry red, spice, pepper & berry flavors, also grown in Italy as Primativo)
  • Barbecued Meats
  • Cheese
  • Grilled meats
Zinfandel, White (California medium-bodied sweet blush, made from the dry red grape Zinfandel)
  • Asian food
  • Mild cheese
  • Chicken; grilled or sweet BBQ
  • Ham
  • Turkey; roasted or smoked