Which Wine Goes With That Dish?

Food pairings with wine can make some people panic. Most assume that real connoisseurs know some inside secrets that they don't, and are afraid of looking foolish when offering a certain bottle with a certain main course. In reality, there are only a few important tips to remember when pairing wine with food.

Red With Red, White With Everything Else

This is one of the most basic "rules" of food pairings. Red wine goes with red meat, and white wine goes with everything else. Of course it's not completely that simple, but this is one of the most basic guidelines you can keep in mind.

The reason for this is because red meat is considered to be a very heavy meal, and white wines are typically lighter and rather crisp, and may be somewhat overwhelmed by the main course. Pairing a light wine with such a robust dish is going to make you lose the flavor of the wine and do nothing to enhance the taste of the dish.

Additionally, if you were to have a hearty red wine with a light dish of pasta or fish, you would no doubt notice how your food is overpowered and you lose much of its flavor. And if your pasta dish has a heavy red sauce, this would no doubt just clash with a heavy red wine. By pairing this with a taste that's lighter and crisper, you can better enjoy the flavor and texture of both.

Desserts and Your Options

Many enjoy a good wine with a dessert and can be at a loss as to what to do now. There really are no hard and fast rules, except that you need to keep in mind the texture and sweetness of the dessert just as you would the flavor and body of your main course. Some desserts have much less sugar than others, and when you have a very sugary dessert with a very dry wine, the contrast in flavors may detract from both. Many recommend a sweeter wine such as a Reisling for dessert, and suggest you avoid a dryer Chardonnay.

Rules Are Meant to Be Broken

Remember that these so-called rules are really just guidelines and of course you need to make your own decisions according to your own tastes. Some people don't care for dry white wines no matter what the food, while others find reds to be too heavy and spicy. If you truly want to find a good food pairing, don't hesitate to experiment with a few different combinations, and make your choices based on what you enjoy the most and what seems to make your food the most enjoyable.

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About The Author, David Cowley
David Cowley has created numerous articles on Wines. He has also created a Web Site dedicated to wine information. Visit Wine Information