A quick recap from last week's post...
1. You can choose to pair your wine with food by contrasting or mirroring (we're focusing on mirroring)
2. Both white and red wine can be broken up into the categories of light, medium, and bold
3. All recommendations are merely suggestions and tips from the experts. The most important piece of advice when it comes to drinking wine, is just drink what makes you happy!
Last week I gave a shout out to Clinton Kelly on the Chew for his easy, non-intimidating explanation of wine and food pairings, which is yet again, where this graphic below was borrowed from:
For the light category, we went with a Pinot Noir. With this chosen wine, berry preserves-raspberry, blueberry and cherry are coupled with hints of sweet spice and an earthiness on the nose. This would be amazing with a nice piece of salmon with a blueberry reduction, using a splash of the wine before serving and vinegar to create a bit of a sweet and sour effect. A hearty fish taco with halibut and a berry and avocado salsa would also provide a great compliment, mirroring the flavors in the wine.
We chose a Merlot for the medium category. This one, with ripe plummy aromas with hints of dark chocolate, subtle herbs and black cherry with a mild fruity acidity, really would go well with so many different foods, as do most wines in the medium category. The mild acidity mirrors that which you get from tomatoes lending itself as an easy pick with a traditional Margherita Pizza. Or why not even give it a try with a rich chili that has a hint of bittersweet chocolate?
Our final wine of this 2 part series, is a bold Cabernet Sauvignon, which is probably the most famous red wine grape variety on earth. This wine is dark garnet in color with a nose of black cherry and red plum. Its full bodied taste explodes with blackberries but is balanced by sweet cedary notes from its duration in American oak. Those cedar notes make it a perfect pairing with a steak that's gotten a nice char in a smokey cedar grill.
Hopefully, if you're a wine novice, this has given you some information to help you feel a bit more confident the next time you try to choose a wine to serve. Also know that whether in a wine shop or in a restaurant there is never any reason to be embarrassed to ask for a recommendation. It takes years to become a wine expert, so feel good knowing that they're helping to guide you based on your specific taste preferences.
For those missing a fun cocktail...stay tuned till next Friday!