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Pairing Northern Italian Red Wines

Pairing Northern Italian Red Wines

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The diverse collection of varietals from Northern Italy gives new meaning to food and wine pairings

Northern Italy presents the food lover with an arsenal of food-friendly wines made in a multitude of styles. As you look at each region of Northern Italy, you can see the influences of the surrounding cultures. Remember that through the centuries, these lands changed hands between countries and governments time and time again. The results can be seen in regions like Valle d’Aosta, where the French influence is apparent, and Friulli, where you’re more likely to think you’re in a Germanic village than an Italian one.

Just as the people are so different from the rest of Italy, so are the foods and the wines. The foods of the Valtellina are more recognizable as Austrian than Italian, and the same goes for each region and their diverse cultures. Rich, hearty mountain dishes, alpine cheeses, and various cured pork products are staple foods throughout the region. In this region, polenta and rice is the order of the day instead of a plate of pasta.

As for the wines, they span the entire spectrum from alpine-influenced with notes of herbs and flowers to massively structured beasts with decades of aging potential. And let’s not forget styles such as amarone, a wine essentially made from raisins. What do they all have in common? They all have that Italian calling card of acidity which makes them fantastic wines to have at the table.

Click here to see pairings for Barbera, Amarone, and more Northern Italian reds.

— Eric Guido, Snooth

Wine Pairings for Spaghetti alla Puttanesca

A pasta as assertive as Puttanesca demands very specific wines. But, of course, almost all Italian wines sport very distinctive character. In fact, all together, they are quite theatrical. Here are a few that take the main stage (or center table) with gusto.

From “stage right” enter the whites. Central and southern Italian whites have the medium body and broad mid-palate to support the boldness of this dish. They also show heartier, more savory elements as opposed to the lighter herbal notes typical in northern Italian whites. Look around for Arnaldo Caprai Grecante, an Umbrian wine made entirely from the local Grechetto grape. It is usually quite easy to find in fine wine stores. Alternatively, a blend whose flavors will also match well is Marisa Cuomo Ravello Bianco. This is an Amalfi coast blend of Falanghina and Biancolella. Chances are those grape names should roll-off the tongue more easily as the bottle is emptied! This wine also has an unbelievably gentle price!

From “stage left” appear the reds. The capers and tomatoes in this contribute brightness, so a wine with red berry lift will meld better than one whose flavors are focused exclusively on black fruits. Once again, the Marisa Cuomo wines strike the right balance. I pick the Fuore Rosso for this pasta. This juicy, savory red is a blend of Aglianico and the local Piedirosso. This juice shows a twig and underbrush character that remind me of the landscape of southern Italy. And as every Italian will tell you, it’s best to match your regions when it comes to wine and food pairing. However, if you think that even a hint of scrub oak might be best left out of your glass, pop open the Punta Aquila Primitivo from Tenute Rubino instead. The black raspberry aromas are accompanied by a swoosh of black currant on the palate, making this Puglian wine a pleasantly plump accompaniment to Puttanesca.

If you can’t find these specific wines, just remember to ask for central and southern Italian wines with some of the characteristics I mention above. And, as I often mention is the case with pasta, this one pairs better with wines seeing little to no oak.

Cin cin!
Christy Canterbury, Master of Wine (MW)
Wine Editor

Additional tasting of Valpolicellas

This has been a wonderful opportunity to revisit some very happy memories from tours I have run to Northern Italy over the last few years. We have met some outstanding winemakers, enjoyed the best wines they make, and revelled in the beauty of the scenery, the delicious cuisine and the hospitality which Italians never fail to deliver. I really hope the video conveys the magic we have experienced.

The Credits…

Once again, this is a family affair. My wife Fliss has delved into her WSET studies to produce a few pages of background about Northern Italian wine regions, using images from my tours – download here. But the major thanks must go to Julia, our daughter, who rather than finishing her first year at Swansea University has turned her hand to being location scout, set designer, cameraman, lighting engineer, sound technician and editor. I am a very proud dad….

What next?

If you would like to taste the wines in the video do get in touch, I still have some stock. Prices are on the Wines we have tasted page.

Thank you for watching, any feedback is very welcome. And please don’t hesitate to get in touch if you would like to order any of the wines featured in the tasting.

This is a humble potato pancake. Potatoes are grated finely and mixed with egg and flour to create a batter that’s then pan-fried. The result may look a little lighter and be a little chewier than your standard latke, but it makes for a delicate snack that would be well highlighted by a lean, racy pas dosé (zero dosage) bottling like Maso Martis 2015 Dosaggio Zero Riserva Sparkling.

Trento has a range of cheeses from aged Trentigrana that evokes Parmigiano, to soft and mild Casolét, to aged Vezzena and Puzzone di Moena, which remain pretty mild and develop little holes during production, like Swiss cheese. What unites them are the Alpine-herb flavors that come through from the cows’ diet.

Pour a 100% Chardonnay sparkler, such as the Altemasi 2015 Brut, and you’ll find its apple and herb characteristics play along beautifully.

Wines of Northern Italy

It is not easy to select a limited number of wines characteristic of Italy’s northern regions: there are so many and of such a high quality, I honestly feel guilty leaving names out of this article.

Surely, the same would happen if I had to list the best wines of the Italian Centre or the Italian South, but today’s task is harder for me, because I come from Piemonte and from the Langhe, so I may be a little biased. My grandfather used to make an amazing Dolcetto and, as he had two small vineyards, one in the Langhe where we live, and one in the Monferrato, where he was born, he also produced a delightful Moscato.

Forgive me, so, if I will get too lyrical about the wines of my land…

Regardless of the names you will read here, feel free – no, feel obliged! – to be adventurous with wines when you are in Italy: do not be afraid to ask around for lesser known varieties, try something new, something rare. Get to the countryside, stop at a local restaurant and ask them for what they drink during their own meals you may end up with a bottle without any fancy label, but containing the most amazing wine you will ever drink in your life.

I should probably open that bottle of Moscato a wine-producing friend gave me, and enjoy a glass while we explore the vineyards of Piemonte, Lombardia, Liguria, Veneto, Trentino Alto-Adige, Friuli Venezia-Giulia and Emilia Romagna: fancy keeping me company?

The Wines of Piemonte

Probably Piemonte is, along with Tuscany, the best known Italian wine producing area outside of Italy. This comes especially from the popularity of his most famous red, Barolo, and by the fact Piemonte is the homeland of Spumante, Italy’s answer to France’s Champagne. There is more than Barolo and Spumante to Piemonte’s wine tradition though…

Barbera: Barbera is one of Piemonte’s favorite wines. For centuries, it was considered the best wine to have on your kitchen table, due to its robust and rich flavor. It remains a favored, every day wine on most Northern Italian tables. Its best known varieties are the Barbera d’Asti and the Barbera del Monferrato Superiore, both DOCG.

Dolcetto: Dolcetto is a very popular wine in Piemonte, especially in the provinces of Cuneo and Alessandria, whose popularity has increased all over Italy in the past decades. It is characterized by an intense ruby color, which tends to get more orangey with age. Its taste is dry, soft and slightly bitter, with hints of almond and a warm, pleasant end. The best known Dolcetto is produced in the Acqui area (province of Alessandria), in that of Dogliani (Cuneo) and on the Alba hills.

Moscato: Moscato d’Asti is an autoctone vine to the hills of Langhe and Monferrato, which produces a very aromatic wine. Sweet and bubbly, it is very fresh and a true treat in those warm days of Summer we enjoy in the Northern areas of Italy. Scents of orange blossom, thyme and peach can be recognized in it and its color embraces hay-like hues, with hints of green. It has an intense, fresh taste, with fruity hints typical of all varieties of the Moscato grape. The best known Moscato is produced in the Asti and Alessandria provinces of Piemonte.

Wines of Northern Italy: a cantina piemontese (Paola Sucato/flickr)

The wines of Liguria

Liguria is known for its typical landscape, made of majestic mountains, overhanging gentle hills that roll into the sea. It is on these very hills that some of Italy’s most delicious wines are produced. They may not be as known as their Piedmontese and Tuscan cousins, but are well worth a try.

Sciacchetrà: sometimes also spelled “sciachetrà,” it is a DOC wine produced in the province of La Spezia. It is a “vino passito,” which means grapes are let “appassire,” dry up, for a period of time before being processed into wine. This makes passito wines, including Sciacchetrà, rich and sweet. Its name comes, very likely, from the dialectal word “sciaccàa,” which means “to squeeze” in Ligurian dialect. Sciacchetrà has a rich, dark gold color and it is a perfect partner for desserts, or even for an uncommon – yet delightful – winter aperitivo. Its most renowned varieties are produced in the Cinque Terre area.

Massarda: Massarda is a rich Ligurian wine, little known outside of Italy. And what a pity it is. It is produced especially in the Val Nervia, in the Ligurian Ponente, between Savona and Ventimiglia and is characterized by an intense hay-yellow color. Its scent is delicate, with notes of wildflowers, wood resins and citrus and its flavor is dry and fresh. It is perfect for Italian antipasti, fresh cheeses, fish and egg based dishes.

Vineyards in Cinque Terre (Alias Rex/flickr)

The wines of Lombardia

Many people, Italian included, tend to associate Lombardia chiefly with industry and the fashion and economy world embodied by its capital, Milan. In truth, the region has a rich culinary tradition, and is home to good wines, too.

Bonarda dell’Oltrepo Pavese: this wine is produced with a vine named Croatina and is typical of the Pavia area of Lombardia. Mind, though: it has nothing to do with the Bonarda vine grown in Piemonte. Bonarda dell’Oltrepo Pavese has a DOC denomination, and is a well known wine throughout the country in name of its deep ruby red color and its dry flavor. It is particularly good served with cured meats, stews, cotechini, and zampone. Pasta dishes served with meat sauces are also perfect when drinking Bonarda. As said, Bonarda reaches its best in the production of the region around Pavia.

Franciacorta: Franciacorta is a wine producing region that has given origin (and name) to one of Italy’s best known Spumanti. Just as Asti and Marsala, Franciacorta has been given the right by the EU to identify its wines simply with their geographical denomination. It has a DOCG denomination and can be produced only and exclusively in the province of Brescia. For its production, Franciacorta only allows the “classical method,” through which fermentation can only happen in the bottle. This is the same technique used to produce Champagne. Franciacorta comes in many varieties: Franciacorta Satèn, Franciacorta Rosé, Fraciacorta Millesimato and Franciacorta Riserva.

A vineyard if Franciacorta (Guido Andolfato/flickr)

The wines of Veneto

Veneto is commonly known as the land of Prosecco and Pinot, but there are more amazing wines to know than these rightly famous names. The wines of the Valpollicella area, in the province of Verona, as well as the beautiful wines of the Colli Euganei are notable and delicious.

Amarone della Valpolicella: Amarone is a passito wine (like the Sciacchetrà of Liguria) that can be produced only with specific vines: the Corvina Veronese, the Corvinone and the Rondinella. It is characterized by a beautifully rich, deep red color and a just as rich and deep, velvety flavor. Curiosity: Amarone was very likely already produced in Antiquity, as Catullus mentioned already a wine with Amarone’s characteristics in 49 BC. Best known varieties of Amarone (all DOCG) are the Amarone della Valpolicella Classico, produced in the area of the Valpolicella defined “Valpolicella Classica,” Amarone della Valpolicella Valpantena, produced in the homonymous area, and the Amarone della Valpolicella Riserva, aged no less than 4 years.

Vini dei Colli Euganei: all wines produced in the Colli Euganei area have a DOC denomination. Many varieties of wines are considered of the “Colli Euganei,” including Sauvignons, Cabernets, Merlots and Spumanti.

Vineyards of the Colli Euganei (Marvin PA/flickr)

The wines of Trentino Alto-Adige

When we think of Trentino Alto-Adige we think of the Dolomites and the beautiful landscapes of the Alps. The lands of the region, especially their valleys, are particularly fertile and perfect for vine cultivations. Pinots, in all their varieties, are produced here and a beautiful white, Riesling, is also typical of these enchanted area of Northern Italy.

Pinot Nero: Trentino Alto-Adige is one of Italy major producers of Pinot Nero DOC, one of the most delicate and noble of all red grapes. Both Pinot Grigio and Pinot Bianco (also cultivated in the area) are genetic variations of this vine. Pinot nero is used to produce both red wines and Spumanti, to confer them more depth. The Pinot Nero wine proper, as produced in Alto-Adige, is characterized by a ruby to grenadine red color, with a high content of tannines and a deep, rich flavor. Its scent brings to mind the intense aroma of fruits of the forest. It is produced especially in the Bassa Atesina, in the Adige Valley, in the Conca di Bolzano and in Val Venosta. It is particularly good with mature, strong cheeses, wild game and meat dishes.

Riesling: Riesling grapes are originary from Germany and produce a fine, delicate white wine, with hints of peach, apricot and green apple. It is a lively and elegant wine, with a light color ranging from light yellow to green. It is particularly good with rich soups, shrimp cocktail and seafood in general, as well as with lobster. It is also a very good aperitivo wine. Riesling DOC denominations in Alto Adige include those of Riesling dell’Alto Adige, Alto Adige Terlano Riesling, Alto Adige Valle Isarco Riesling, Alto Adige Val Venosta Riesling.

A vineyard landscape in Trentino Alto Adige (Rowena/flickr)

Wines of Friuli Venezia-Giulia

Friuli Venezia-Giulia is a noted wine producing area, where vines such as pinot, riesling, cabernet are normally cultivated. However, the typical vine of the area is another: Friulano.

Friulano: in truth, you may not be familiar with this name, but you may know the name it used to be known by until 2007, Tocai. The name was changed in accord with EU directives, which aimed at eliminating the possible confusion with Hungary Tocaj, produced in the homonymous region. Friulano wine is produced in seven DOC areas of Friuli, the Colli Orientali, Collio, Annia, Aquileia, Isonzo, Latisana and Grave. It produces a fine, dry, harmonious wine, of a hay-like yellow, characterized by a slight bitter after taste. It is a perfect match to soups and fish dishes.

A bottle of Friulano (once known as Tocai), Friuli Venezia-Giulia’s best known wine (ulterior epicure/flickr)

Wines of Emilia-Romagna

Ah… Emilia-Romagna: a land of gorgeous food and of people who made of enjoying life to the full their creed. Let’s not forget this region’s fantastic wines: typical is, of course, Lambrusco, but it is far from being the only jewel in Emilia-Romagna’s wines crown.

Lambrusco: the Lambrusco vine is the most commonly found in the plains between Parma, Reggio Emilia and Modena. Its name tells us this vine was, in origin, found in the wild, as “lambrusco” comes from “labrusca,” or “vite selvatica” (a wild type of grape producing vine). Apparently, we can thank the Lombards for the sparkle in Lambrusco: it was them, in the Middle Ages, who started to ferment grapes to produce a sparkling type of wine, perfect to cleanse the palate between the many, heavy dishes of their typically rich meals.

Lambrusco is pleasantly sparkling and light, with hints of violet and red fruits. Loved a bit everywhere in the world, it is the most exported of all Italian wines. Known are the refined Sorbara variety and the more intense Grasparossa.

Trebbiano Romagnolo and Colli di Imola Trebbiano: the Trebbiano vine is among the most cultivated white vines in Italy. A particular variety of it is found in Romagna, especially in the area surrounding Ravenna. Here the Trebbiano Romagnolo and the Colli di Imola Trebbiano are produced, both with a DOC denomination. These Trebbiano wines are pleasant and light, with a mild flavor. It is the perfect wine for informal dinners and picnics with friends and family, especially when matched with a piadina or a platter of salumi. More formally, it can be perfect accompaniment for fish based dishes.

The presence of the Trebbiano Romagnolo vine in the Romagna area is documented since the 14 th century.

A typical Emilia-Romagna landscape (Giorgio Galeotti/flickr)

Here ends our brief trip into the world of wines in Northern Italy. If you found it as pleasant and delightful to read as I did writing it, make sure to check out its follow ups: The Wines of Central Italy and The Wines of Southern Italy.

At Home In Northern Italy: An Italian's Homecooking

Italians really know how to eat! It's not just the food--though it starts there, beginning with excellent produce: ripe red tomatoes dripping with sweet juice, perfect basil, asparagus, wheat, broad beans and other wholesome vegetables raised in the mineral-rich soil. (Much of Italy was watery some 100 million years ago, being under the ocean floor receiving layers of calcium carbonate deposits before the land was lifted and crunched up against the European continental plate.) Parmesan cheese, prosciutto, Parma ham, balsamic vinegar, and Italy's extra virgin olive oil are known the world over for their quality. Give these to a great cook, add extended family, friends, some local wines, a classic setting--say a long table under a string of lights outside on a warm, fragrant evening--plus conversation in abundant servings and you have yourself a real Italian meal.

My Italian friend Luciana is a terrific cook. Out of her kitchen emerge delicious foods. In fact, it was after a superb meal at her place near Lago Maggiore five years ago that I started blogging about food and travel. (See her recipe for Tuna Mousse from my first visit) I had the chance to visit with her again last month on Italy's Labor Day and she prepared a lovely meal to be shared with her family--including "il più' bello zio nel mondo", as he introduced himself ("the best looking uncle in the world"). Family dinners in Italy last for hours because Italians take the time to converse and enjoy the food and wine. (The longest meal I experienced in Italy was 5 1/2 hours long--but that's a subject for another blog post).

"Frittura di paranza" is mix of small fishes washed but left whole, dusted with flour, deep-fried, then sprinkled with lemon, salt and pepper. Luciana had bought baby fish from the Mediterranean: triglia di scoglio which is a reef mullet and gamberetti--tiny shrimp. Clams and mussels were stirred into a sauce for pasta raw artichokes were trimmed, soaked in water and lemon juice, very thinly sliced and dressed for a raw salad (Tuna Mousse recipe) bread was rubbed with garlic and topped with tomatoes, olive oil and balsamic and a cheese plate prepared with a quartet of artisanal cheese, including tallegio, mozzarella, and Parmesan. On this beautiful day, we enjoyed a leisurely meal, lingering with a dessert of an ice cream cake covered with meringue and little cups of aromatic Vin Santo served with biscotti.

Families are close in Italy, often living under one roof. Luciana's parents live in the house next door, on a property that includes her father's workshop. Gianfranco Caporali and Luciana's partner Uli, who is learning from the master, create fabulous works in wood: custom cabinetry and "paintings" with intricate wood inlay. Her father has also made three one-of-a-kind cars of wood. These miraculous creations are fully functional. The chassis and engine are the original metal components, but all the accessories like the sunshades, mirror holders, sunroof frame, hubcaps and steering wheel are all crafted from wood. If you are traveling to the lake district of Italy, stop by the little town of Cittiglio to see his creations. His shop is open every day.

A Taste of Italy: Italian Wine and Cheese Pairings

Italy is a land of culinary delights, from pasta and olive oil to meats and cheeses – and wine – don’t forget the wine! Italian wine and cheese pairings are a staple of cheese boards everywhere. However, many of the most popular Italian cheeses come from the central or southern regions of Italy, and the northern cheese specialties are rather less likely to make an appearance. Mozzarella, provolone, ricotta, pecorino, parmesan, and even mascarpone, are all from the sunny southern regions, beginning in Emilia Romagna and moving down.

Don’t make the mistake of forgetting about Northern Italian food, though. The north of Italy touches France (hello all things cheese), Switzerland (home of the Brown Swiss cow, of dairy fame), Austria, and Slovenia, making for an interesting mix of influences and a cuisine that is distinct from the rest of the country. Let’s take a look at some Northern Italian cheese choices and wines that pair well with them.


Credit: @Asiago PDO Cheese

As you may know, Asiago comes in multiple forms, from the soft, firm Asiago pressato, sold young and fresh, to the crumbly Asiago d’allevo which is matured anywhere from 4 months to 2 years. Made only on the Asiago plateau, in the Veneto region of Italy, Asiago is a hard cow’s milk cheese that offers delicious salty nuttiness whether eaten on its own or sprinkled over pasta, omelets or salad. Serve aged Asiago with a full, tannic red wine that will complement the richness of the cheese. A Primitivo, a Barolo, or a lovely Amarone della Valpolicella will offer a great match to this distinctive cheese.


Credit: @Dorignac’s Food Center

The Valle d’Aosta, next to Switzerland, produces this semi-soft cow’s milk cheese, which is often used to make fonduta , a sort of fondue eaten with toast and vegetables. Developed in the 13th century, it has a mild, slightly nutty flavo r, with hints of grass. Its creamy smooth texture makes it perfect for melting, but it is just as delicious on a piece of crostini with a drizzle of honey. Try fontina with a local Pinot Bianco or Swiss Chasselas , the acidity will offset the richness of the cheese, or with a vin jaune from Jura. These French whites are nutty and full-bodied, perfect white pairings for fondue.


Credit: @il granaio di gabriello

This most famous Italian blue cheese dates back to the 11th century and is said to have originated in the town of Gorgonzola near Milan. It is made of cow’s milk and comes in two types – the younger Sweet Gorgonzola and the more mature Spicy Gorgonzola. A young Gorgonzola is more mild and creamier than the aged version, in which the “blue” flavor becomes more pronounced and piquant. To bring out the sweet softness of a younger Gorgonzola, try it with an off-dry Prosecco – the fruity bubbles offer a palate cleanser after the heavy cheese. Or pair either version with sweet wines such as marsala or port.


Credit: @igourmet

Benedictine monks in the Friuli-Venezia Giulia region began making this cheese in the 13th century. Montasio is a firm cow’s milk cheese, very present in Italian cuisine but not as well known outside of the country. Wheels of cheese are left to mature anywhere from 60 days to 18 months, and their originally mild flavor becomes fuller and fruitier with age. This cheese requires light wine to avoid overpowering its softness, and works particularly well with Pinot Bianco, Italian Merlot, or even a lightly sparkling Lambrusco.


Credit: @Ico Krajcovic

Taleggio dates back to the 9th century, originating in the Taleggio Valley of the Lombardy region. It is another semi-soft cow’s milk cheese, but with a more pungent aroma and rind. Taleggio tastes creamy, and slightly fruity – a bit of a surprise given its strong smell – and is much milder than one might expect at first sniff. Pair it with light bodied red wines from the region to enhance its smoothness and bring out the fruit y flavor . Schiava , a red grape from Alto Adige, makes a deliciously light and fr uity pairing to Taleggio, as does a Barbera or a Valpolicella Classico .

This is but a start to your Italian cheese and wine pairing journey, as Italy has much, much more to offer – however, it will give you a delicious introduction to the occasionally overlooked northern regions and their epicurean delights. Try pairing each cheese with a Northern Italian wine, each cheese here includes at least one suggestion, and see how the cuisine and wine of Italian regions complement each other. In Italy, food is never rushed, so take your time with tasting. Note the sensations of each cheese and wine on your tongue, how the aromas and flavors combine to create an enriched experience. Savor the moment. Buon appetito !

Wine/Port Pairing

Food and Wine Pairing Basics (Start Here!) 16 Stylish Wines For Upscale Breakfasts. If you can drink a mimosa for breakfast, then wine for breakfast is fine too.

In fact, one could make a pretty strong argument to ditch the OJ altogether and just drink wine. So, don’t feel bad if you pop a beautiful breakfast bottle with your weekend brunch. There’s no shame in it. Even when someone pokes you with, “Oh, I see you having wine before five!” Raise your eyebrows and say, “I bet you wish you could join me.” <img src=" alt="Avocado Toast wine pairing with Sauvignon Blanc illustration by Wine Folly" width="1920" height="1080" size-full wp-image-14798" />Smashed Avocado ToastWine Pairings: Sauvignon Blanc, Picpoul de Pinet, Soave, Grüner VeltlinerImagine a thick slice of crusty bread that’s covered with smashed avocado, drizzled with EVO (extra-virgin olive oil), dusted with cumin, salt, and red pepper flakes, and sprinkled with fresh green herbs.

12 Classic Wine and Cheese Pairings You Must Try. Here are 12 classic wine and cheese pairings that can’t be missed.

They explore the awesomeness of what this iconic match has to offer with some of the world’s most interesting wines. Of course this doesn’t mean that just any wine is perfect with any cheese. So where do you begin? In this article, we will explore 12 wine and cheese pairings that represent just how delicious and complementary this duo can be. Best Wine For Sushi? Try One of These. When thinking sushi, the first thought is usually sake (saa-kaay), and rightfully so.

Colloquially known as Japanese rice wine, sake is actually closer to beer than wine. But, that’s another story. So, in lieu of the classic, let’s chat (sushi-friendly) grape-based beverages. In this article, the aim is to simplify some of that “what if,” discerned through tireless (and totally selfless) tasting of wines alongside some of the more interesting styles of sushi. Sushi is one of the more diverse types of food there are many regional variants as well as North American adaptations. Albariño. 15 Rules for Great Wine and Food Pairings. The Best Wine & Food Pairings for Sparkling, Dry Rosé & More. Creating the perfect food and wine pairing sounds like a daunting task.

Thankfully, there are three categories of wine that pair with nearly every dish imaginable. From fresh seafood to rich poultry dishes and an array of spicy cuisines in between, turn to one of these three styles when trying to make an impeccable match of food and vino. Aside from being festive, fizzy and downright delicious, sparkling wine is one of the most versatile wines to put on the table. The naturally high acidity is great for cutting through rich, heavy sauces while complementing the crisp, salty nature of fresh seafood and salads.

Bubbles also make it the perfect pre-dinner choice to get your appetite going. For a stellar pairing, try with: Beer Battered Fish Tacos or Swiss Cheese Fondue. A Simple Guide To Pairing Wine With Christmas Dinner - With Recipes. Fortunately, the holiday season kinda takes care of itself.

Just kidding, it can actually be a shopping/cooking/rum-punch-swilling nightmare. Which is why we went ahead and earned our place on the “Nice” list (at least, got off the “Persona Non Grata”) list by creating a handy guide to pairing your holiday meal with the right wine. Appetizers. An Illustrated Guide To Pairing Wine And Cheese. One marriage no one can object to is the mouthwatering combination of wine and cheese.

Each is delicious on its own, but when you pair the two, magic can happen. Be it tannic, light, sweet, or dry, you can bet there’s a wine out there for every cheese (even fondue!). The next time you fix yourself up a cheese plate, here are the wines you should be bringing along for the ride. Port And Bleu Cheese. The Definitive Guide to Pairing Chianti Classico With Popular Mexican Food: INFOGRAPHIC.

Italian wine with Mexican food?

Si! With several cultural similarities (including the love of food and family) and a common Latin origin to the languages, why not bring a little la bella vita to your next fiesta? 15 Rules for Great Wine and Food Pairings. 7 Worst Wine and Food Pairings. Champagne and oysters are a classic wine and food pairing.

It has also been beaten into our heads that Cabernet Sauvignon and steak are inseparable like Calvin and Hobbes. However instead of giving you the best, we’re going to give you the worst wine and food pairings. Why? Sometimes learning what not to do helps more. What are you guilty of? TIP If you’re drinking water in between each taste of food and wine, then the pairing is not working. Is a bad pairing really that bad? The Dispicable (Greed) You’re at a restaurant rolling on someone else’s money, or you just robbed a bank and really want to go all out and enjoy yourself. Cabernet Sauvignon & Caviar. The Ultimate Guide to Pairing Wine With Pasta (Infographic) Wellness trends come and go, but pasta is forever.

Whether it’s a quick weeknight supper, indulgent feast, or Hail Mary hangover remedy, there is no wrong time to pick up one’s fork and embrace la dolce vita. Among the many excellent pasta-centric restaurants debuting across the United States (we see you, Felix Trattoria in L.A. and Lilia in Brooklyn), we are especially taken with Manhattan’s Don Angie. Opened in October 2017, it promptly became one of the city’s hottest tables, thanks in part to its multi-colored pastas and lasagna built for two. We asked Damien Good, Don Angie’s general manager, to create the ultimate guide to pairing our favorite pasta dishes with wine. Whether you’re a linguine-with-clams loyalist or lifelong rigatoni fan, Good’s pairings will keep hearts happy and glasses filled.

Illustration by Mara Kiggins. Authentic Italian Pizza and The Wines To Complement. The best pizzas in America pay homage to classic Italian toppings and preparation methods.

The real magic to authentic Italian pizzas are the flavor pairings in the toppings. For example, the most popular Neapolitan/Margherita pizza creates synergy with fresh, acidic tomatoes, aromatic basil and smooth creamy mozzarella. Of course, great pizza reaches a whole new dimension when paired with a well selected wine. Let’s take a look at 6 classic Italian pizzas and the wines that go with them. Since pizzas go well with nearly every wine, we enlisted the help of Master Somm, Jack Mason , to help narrow down the selection to just Italian wines. Port, Cheese, and Dessert Pairing – the Master Class. Best known as a nightcap or an after meal drink, Port – and its interesting range of styles – can be a great companion for cheeses and chocolates.

Gentleman’s Gazette takes you through the many ways to pair Port wine. Port was the first wine I drank. With Portuguese and Italian ancestors, my mother used to soup up my morning eggnog with a spoon of Port before I went to school. I was 10, if my memory serves me well, and before the political correctness patrol screams in horror, I must remark that it is a common practice in Latin European countries. (Italians do the same, mostly with Marsala, their own fortified wine.)

Pairing Wine with Fish. Learn what wines pair best with the four different groups of fin fish. From flaky tilapia to steak-like swordfish, there are a range of potential wine pairings. Beyond just the choice of fish, the sauce and fish preparation affects what tastes best when pairing wine with fish. 4 Different Types of Fish with Wine Fin fish can be characterized into 4 major groups by texture and flavor.

As a general rule white wine pairs well with most fish, but certain white wines go better with certain types of fish. 1. Mild flavored white fish with filets that are usually thin. Wine Pairing With Thai Food. One of the world’s great cuisines calls for a great wine. Here’s what to pair with Thai—a food that combines the sweet, the sour, the salty, and the spicy in perfect harmony. Thai cuisine is unique. Take a moment to see if you can sum it up in one sentence. No, seriously, try it.

We’ll wait… Time’s up! What goes into your favorite Pad Thai or curry isn’t a random assembly of ingredients. How To Pair Burgers And Rose Wine Like A Food Expert. Nothing says summer like burgers. When you don’t have access to a backyard, though, you’ve got to do what you’ve got to do to get your fix. With options like Shake Shack, Walburgers and Five Guys, there is never a shortage of a good burger to get your hands on. And, since it’s summer, it’s the perfect time to trade in your beer for rosé — even with your burger.

Believe it or not, they pair quite well together! Since the kind of meat will determine the kind of rosé you should reach for, I turned to a pro for his advice. “There is just something about a good burger that is so appealing, and frankly, there’s no better hangover cure. 15 Rules for Great Wine and Food Pairings. 5-essential-french-wine-and-cheese-pairings-explained?insp[email protected]hotmail. Despite my wine background and despite how much of my paycheck I set aside to fulfill my cheese cravings, I still have yet to master the art of wine and cheese pairings. I decided to broaden my cheese-ducation and called upon James Ayers, master fromager at gourmet shop Atelier Fine Foods, to help me navigate the dizzying world of French cheeses.

The storefront is a gourmand’s paradise in the heart of Yountville, one of Napa’s northern towns. Six Cheeses That Pair with Pretty Much Every Wine. Wine is awesome. Getting Started With Food and Wine Pairing. 15 Rules for Great Wine and Food Pairings. Pairing Grilled Cheese & Wine. Wine and cheese go together so well, at this point, their marriage has almost become a cliché. But when was the last time you sat down with a grilled cheese sandwich and a glass of your favorite vintage? 6 Tips on Pairing Wine and Cheese. 12 Styles of Fries Paired With Wine. We’ve all been there before: It’s nearly midnight and you’ve been drinking for the past few hours, and, as expected, those drunchies are starting to kick in. Deep down you know you’ll regret it, but in this moment, you absolutely need the breadiest, greasiest thing you can get your hands.

5 Food and Wine Pairings That Break the Rules. Burger and Wine Pairings Done Right. Hamburgers are the headlining feature in American comfort food and wine has been collecting fans for thousands of years all over the globe – but can the two really stand side by side on a menu? 10 Dishes to Help You Appreciate German Riesling. If we could only pair one grape varietal with food for eternity, we’d choose Riesling. For some strange reason, Riesling has acquired a reputation in America for producing “sugary” or “sweet” wines, when in reality, most bottles of Riesling are actually bone dry.

Regions all over the world are producing stellar Rieslings, such as the Finger Lakes in New York and the Clare Valley in Australia. But today, we’re focusing on the motherland of the varietal: Germany. From bone dry to sugary sweet, we’re pairing 10 recipes all over the flavor profile spectrum that bring out the joys of German Riesling. 10 Wine Pairings That Break the Rules. 15 Rules for Great Wine and Food Pairings. 7 Great Choices for Thanksgiving Wines (2016) Adam Vourvoulis Is Disrupting the Wine World. How to Pair Cigars with Spirits, Wine and Beer — Gentleman's Gazette.

The Wine And Cheese Pairing App. The Definitive Guide To Pairing Charcuterie and Wine. Getting Started With Food and Wine Pairing. The New Rules of Pairing Wine with Sushi. Coastal White Wines Are The Perfect Pairing For Seafood. Wines To Pair With Steak When You’re Tired of Cabernet Sauvignon. How to Choose a Cooking Wine. Dunk Into National Doughnut Day With These Doughnut And Wine Pairings. Wine Pairings For 14 Of The Most Popular Seafood Dishes [Infographic] The Best Ribera and Rueda Wine Pairings in the World.

On Pairing Wine With Pasta. Pairing Burger King Hot Dogs With An Orin Swift Red Blend [Video] The Expert Guide To Pairing Goat Cheese And Wine. The Ultimate Guide To Pairing Girl Scout Cookies & Wine [INFOGRAPHIC] Asian Food and Wine Pairings. Yes to pairing Champagne with the main course. Perfect Wine Pairings For 11 Hearty Stews [INFOGRAPHIC] Huffingtonpost. Best Wine and Cookie Pairings. Herb and Spice Pairings with Wine. Deconstructing a Wine Dinner From Starters to Dessert. Wine Enthusiast Wine and Food Pairing Series 2015. Best - Top 10 Seafood Wines. Pairing Wine with Salmon. We Paired The Land, Air And Sea From McDonald's Secret Menu With A 3rd Growth Bordeaux. An Illustrated Guide To Pairing Wine & Seafood.

The Absolute, All-Time, Best Wine for Lobster. An Illustrated Guide To Pairing Wine And Cheese. 20 Amazingly Simple Food and Wine Pairing Ideas. The Reserve Wine List: An Artifact From a Different Era? Try This Food and Wine Pairing Lesson at Home. Advanced Food & Wine Pairing. Tips on Pairing Wine with Ham. Unpretentious Wine Pairings: Cheese Product.

Pairing Grilled Cheese & Wine. Pairing Taco Bell Crunchwraps With Chateau Montelena. Unlikely Wine Pairings: Ethiopian Food. Casual and Junk Food Wine Pairings with Richard Breitkreutz. Connecting Site. TV Dinner and Wine Pairing Guide. Drink like a True Roman: The Wine of Lazio. Holiday Dessert Pairings. Nonconformist Oyster & Wine Pairings. 10 Delicious Ways to Use Up Leftover Wine — Tips from The Kitchn. Unpredictable Food & Wine Pairings. Wine and Cheese Pairing Ideas. 10 Outstanding Wines With Turkey. 5 Wines to Pair with Indian Food Classics. 6 Food Trends Call For Off-The-Wall Wine Pairings. How to Pair with Great Wines! What Wines to Pair with Take-out Food - Chinese Take-out. How easy is it to Pair Cabernet? A Guide to Rioja [Infographic] 10 Outrageous Champagne Food Pairings.

Pairing Wine with Secret Menu Items. 6 Foods That Don't Pair With Wine. Great Advice on Pairing Wine with Pizza. Pairing Wine with Steak, Lamb and Red Meat. Great Advice on Pairing Wine with Pizza. How to Pair Wine to Your Late Night Meals. Guide to Zinfandel Wine. How to Order Wine Like a Sommelier. How to Host a Wine Tasting Party (ideas) 15 Frustrating Things About Being a Wine Lover. What Wine with Mexican Food? Pairing Northern Italian Reds. 5 Basic Pairing Concepts.

An Italian Wine Dinner Menu

There is something about Italian wine that takes you immediately to the table. Images of fun gatherings with family and friends or romantic dinners for two come easily to mind. With that thought, Faith and I decided to put together some easy ideas for an Italian wine inspired dinner. Here’s a whole menu, beginning to end, of Italian food and wine. You just add the table and the friends, and it’s a celebration waiting to happen.

Putting together a multi-course meal with wines for each course can be a lot of work (not to mention expensive, especially if you have a lot of people coming to dinner). But the delight of a big meal like this at home, paired with wines like in a fine restaurant, is something that people don’t get to experience very often. I (Faith) try to do this once or twice a year with friends — it’s such a fun and abundant sort of meal.

Here’s how this will go: Mary will talk about the wine she recommends for each course, and then I’ll show you the wine I found locally, and the food that I made to go along with it.

1st Course: Prosecco & Nibbles

Prosecco is the much-loved sparkling wine from the Veneto area of Italy. Because of its popularity, there was a lot of mediocre Prosecco made in the late 2000s. However, since 2009, things have vastly improved. Under the new, tighter regulations Prosecco wines can only come from the Veneto regions. The best wines carry the DOCG Conegliano and/or Valdobbiadene designation. A number of other designated communes within the Veneto can call their Prosecco wines DOC Prosecco. These are also very good, perhaps not as firmly structured as the former, but deliciously tasty.

It is lovely to start off a meal with a glass of Prosecco. It is fresh and fruity with gentle, creamy bubbles. If you prefer the drier style, look for Brut on the label. Prosecco labeled Extra Dry is sweeter, with up to 20g/l residual sugar compared to a max of 15g/l for Brut. While it is such an easy drink to sip joyously on its own I like to leave out nibbles for guests such as Marcona almonds, spicy shrimp, angels on horseback or even simple slices of chorizo or prosciutto.


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