Looking for the best food and wine pairings? If you want to break out of the old stand-bys, you have to try something new. Food and wine pairing rules still apply - but you can (and should) get creative with them.
Here are 5 of the best food and wine pairings you may be overlooking:
1. Red Wine and Fish
Fish is typically paired with white wine. This is a proven, successful pairing. Why is it that they work so well together? Part of it is that white wine grapes are low in tannins. This means there's little chance of a bitter taste. Look for red wines that are similarly low in tannins: a Pinot Noir is ideal.
2. Pairing with Salad?
Specific wines fit specific vegetables. Mix those veggies together and you lose that specificity, though. Does anything go with a salad that's got lots of raw veggies? Try a rose. It has a fruit-forward character with crispness and a dry finish – perfect for matching a salad. If your salad has fruit in it, even better. The two will pair beautifully.
3. Tapenade Pairings
Tapenade is a delicious snack made chiefly from olives. Additional ingredients can change the flavor of tapenade, which makes it pretty versatile. If your tapenade is made from traditional recipes, aim for a white wine that's crisp. If it includes sundried tomato, choose a sweet red wine.
4. White Pizza and Pinot Gris
Pizza with tomato sauce always tastes good with a red wine. What about white pizzas? Focus on the taste of cheese and other ingredients. Blends of soft cheeses like mozzarella and ricotta taste incredible with pinot gris. Best of all, pinot gris is ideal for pairing with many pizza toppings, from nearly all roast vegetables to chicken and seafood options.
5. Sparkling Wine with Dessert
One of the most overlooked food and wine pairing rules has to do with sweet foods. When you're pairing with a dessert, you always want the wine to be slightly sweeter. This avoids any hints of bitterness. What about when that dessert has dairy in it, like in custards or crème brulee? Here, sparkling wine delivers that sweetness. The fizziness also provides a texture that cuts through the smoothness of the dairy. The two combined make each component – dessert and wine – taste that much more refreshing.
There you have the best food and wine pairings that you're missing out on? Which one will you make next?