Wine and Food Pairing Guide

Talking about the food and wine pairings, many people don’t care much while deciding the menu and place any dish with any wine carelessly without considering that if they pair up well or not. On the other hand, there are some people who try their best to match the brands of wine with the food items perfectly. It doesn’t matter that in which category of people you fall, but there are some dishes whose pairing with right kind of wine is a challenge itself.

That’s the reason; it is important to have a proper knowledge of the rules which should be considered while pairing up the menu of your food with the type of wine you are going to pick to intensify the enjoyment of eating in an actual way. Most of the time you see the pairings like sea bass with Sauvignon Blanc, steaks with Cabernet Sauvignon, and duck breast with Burgundy.

While planning for any event, you need to decide what food suits best with which wine. Here is a brief note on how this works and the basics fragments which are essential for having a perfect match.

How food and wine pairing works?

We get different wine flavors which are extracted from various components like sugar, fruit, acid, tannin, and alcohol. Food items also comprise of various flavoring ingredients like fats, acid, sugar, salt, and bitter. The best kind of food and wine pairing is that one which addresses the complementary components, the texture of taste and the richness of components added.

You can get help from pre-designed pairings or can place a contrast. Like, for pasta which is enriched with thick cream sauce, you can use crispy, unoaked white wine to compensate for the creamy fat. Or, you can cover the richness of creamy flavor of food with soft Chardonnay or Roussanne/Marsanne blend wine.

Obviously, it is necessary to brush up on the basics of red wine or white wine to fully understand the taste of each type of grapes. Keeping that in view, there are basic four elements which you should consider while doing the pairing of food and wine.

Four elements of food and wine pairing

There are few basic and essential elements which make the food and wine pairing successful if they are considered in a true sense. And, they depend on the features of food items you picked and how these features adjust with that of wine. Let’s have a quick look on each factor one by one.

  • Fat element

Many of your favorite food items contain a lot of fats, like meat or dairy products. Wine doesn’t have any fat content, hence when pairing wine with any food item which is enriched with fats, remember that your wine should be able to balance that fatty content with acid.

That’s the reason the steaks cuts are usually served with a cabernet wine. So that the protein and fat present in beef steaks can get compensated by the dry tannin’s wine.

  • Acid element

Acid is another element which plays a key role in both food and wine. In wine, it is added to increase the freshness and lift of liquid. It can be used in food for the same purpose like if you squeeze a lemon on a fried piece of fish, it will bring freshness to the meat.

When you want to place wine with acidic food items, you should be sure that the content of acid in wine must be equal to that of the food. The Sauvignon blanc or Semillon are the good examples of bitter, acidic wines.

  • Salt element

Saltier your food is; difficult it will get to choose the wine. But by doing little effort you can make great combinations of salty food with the sweet wines. Pairing the bleu cheese with Sauternes is an excellent example of classic food and wine combo.

Sparkling wines are preferred with fried and salty foods. The carbonation process of the yeasty acids emulates wine and cleans out salt from food while enhancing the additional texture and flavors to mouth.

  • Sweetness element

It seems easy to place a bottle sweet wine along with the sweet desserts and sugary foods, but one thing which matters here is the degree of sweetness in the food. Some food contains just a light taste of sugar like the fruit sauce served with pork loin. These foods can be easily paired with rich white wines like chardonnay.

High sugared wines are placed to balance the sweetness of food so that wines taste sweeter than the dessert. The pairing of dark, bitter chocolate with red wine harvests a wonderful combo.

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