For the Love of Food : Food and Wine Pairing
The time to wine and dine has officially arrived. Although we might be doing a lot of wine-ing and dining at home this year, it does not mean we cannot go all out and make our Valentine’s Day celebrations a special one. To assist you along the way, we have put together some tips to help you with your food and wine pairing during the season of love.
A Few Basics
The point of pairing wine and food is so that they complement each other by bringing out the bold flavours they each possess. It is more of a subjective process than a science, which leaves plenty of creative space to make the best of your pairings.
There are numerous red wines to choose from. Full-bodied red wines are your Cabernet Sauvignon and Syrah wines. Merlot and Barbera wines are medium-bodied reds and both work well with a variety of foods.
Red wines are paired well with bold-flavoured meats such as steak and lamb. Don’t be fooled, your reds go well with burgers, pizza and chocolate too. This may be better paired with a light-bodied red wine such as a classic Pinot Noir. Take the time to indulge.
Rosé wines are iconic summer wines and go well with anything spicy. It’s best served chilled, as this will bring out its fruity flavour. Food and Wine explains that Rosé can be made from just about any red wine grape variety, so it’s produced in varied hues and styles. You can get pale, light, and crisp to heavy-fruited varieties.
White wines also come in full and light-bodied varieties. Full-bodied whites like Chardonnay work exceptionally well with seafood, pasta, risotto and assorted cheeses. Full-bodied white wines are set apart by their distinct vanilla and coconut notes.
Sauvignon Blanc is a great example of a light-bodied white wine and is a personal favourite among many wine connoisseurs. Whoever said they only drank red wine knew nothing about wine.
Dessert wines are a special variety of wine. Winemakers can preserve the natural sweetness of wine by stopping the fermentation before the yeasts have had a chance to eat up all the sugar. These sweeter wines also have less alcohol so you could theoretically have a little bit more! As the name suggests, dessert wines go well with cakes, fruity pies, fudge and even cookies! A perfect Valentines gift too – sweet wine and sweets!
Champagne and Sparkling Wines
Champagne is a name of sparkling wine produced in the French region, Champagne. Therefore sparkling wines produced in other places may not be called Champagne and have different names according to the region where it was produced. Some well-known types include Prosecco from Italy, Cava from Spain, and the sparkling wines of California and South Africa.
Bubblies are known to work well all on their own as a celebratory drink. You can also serve sparkling wine with salty starters, however, sweeter varieties also go well with desserts.
Read our other date night ideas (including family friendly ideas) here.