words Al Woods
Long gone are the days when world cuisine was a rare curiosity only the most daring ventured to attempt making at home. Wonderful dishes from far away are now a central part of the most flavourful dinner experiences and French wines offer some incomparable pairings.
Always surprising and inspiring, the fusion between an adequately selected wine and an appetizing dish is an invitation to let our senses experience an entirely new mix of flavours. Here are some combinations you should absolutely try!
Let’s start right where some of the most exquisite wines originate from. Food and wine pairings couldn’t occur more naturally than they do in European cuisine. Italian dishes, for instance, rich in bold and fruity flavours, may lend themselves to a superb and aromatic Châteauneuf-du-Pape. To go with the staple that is Spaghetti Bolognese, a Beaujolais or a red Burgundy will work wonders. In a similar manner, the elegant fullness and complexity of a dry Chambertin will complement a paella to perfection.
Speaking of Chambertin, it has also come to constitute an undeniably ubiquitous pairing with Asian cuisine! The purchase of the 12th-century Chateau de Gevrey-Chambertin in Cotes de Nuits, Burgundy, by Louis Ng Chi-sing and the controversy which ensued are enough to illustrate how popular it has become. This red wine pairs particularly well with Japanese marinated tuna and chicken courses. It also suits Shimofuri to perfection. Rosés are best to elevate the flavour profiles of spicy Chinese dishes, while soups and Languedoc wines are a match made in heaven. For Asian-style seafood, go for a dry Chardonnay.
Powerful, rich and deep, spicy dishes such as curries should be paired according to the meat. A Côte-du-Rhône, for instance, will breathe its freshness into a lamb curry while underlining its flavour. If your meal incorporates a sweet aspect into it, as mango pork curry so skillfully does, a white or a rosé wine with citrusy notes such as a Gewurztraminer or a Vallée-du-Rhône will be ideal.
Middle Eastern Cuisine
The warm and comforting spices of Middle Eastern dishes such as tajines or couscous pair incredibly well with the colourful body and the complex, opulent aromas of the Bordeaux wines. And to best enjoy the honey-infused, pistachio-encrusted desserts this destination has to offer, nothing can rival a Sauternes wine.
South American Cuisine
While Tex Mex spiciness traditionally calls to mind a flavoured lager beer, some incredible pairings can also be achieved with wine! Go for a sweet Vendange Tardive white wine and prepare to be amazed. The flavourful notes from this Alsace favourite will bring out the colourful taste of your Mexican-inspired creations.
Millesima offers a wide array of high-quality wines. This Bordeaux-based fine wine specialist has at heart to help you find the perfect bottle. Visit their New York wine store or visit their website to browse their selection and receive some personalised advice.
Most wines are certainly characterised by some tried-and-true pairings. But by allowing them to surprise you with some of their more atypical associations will make for an experience you will not regret