Most persons love to throw dinner parties for their friends and family. But, they may keep out of the way of serving wine because they do not recognise incisively what to serve. Do you serve red or white with fish? Will Merlot be okay if you are serving a Mexican dish? Do not stress over it – there are some basic wine rules you may follow.
The number one rule of thumb when choosing wine is “red wine with red meat, white wine with white meat.” This is not always true, but it in general works rather well when you are unsure. One exception is chicken. The meat is white, but a nice fruity red wine goes well with it. The same may be said for tuna or salmon, so you do not have to always follow the rule of not serving red wine with fish. The second rule is the rule of complements. It is okay to match sweet seafood such as lobster with a sweet white wine. The next rule is the opposites attract. While you normally want to match like flavors, once in a while a contrast, such as a White Bordeaux with bluefish may be wonderful.
Outside of the basic rules, there are sure things you may look for and sure things you may refrain from depending on what you are serving. Here are some hints as to what to serve with peculiar types of food.
Salads and Appetizers
You must keep out of the way of serving wine for the duration of your salad, as vinegar and wine do not mix well. But, if you are having an appetizer, you need to consider the ingredients in the appetizer to aid you choose your wine. If you are having a cheese tray, the type of cheese will help you determine the wine. For example, cheddar is best with arid reds, Merlots, and Cabernet Sauvignon. Pinot Noir goes best with Swiss. Camembert and brie are great with a Chardonnay. The cheese we tend to think of as Italian such as parmigiano, romano, and reggiano go well with Italian arid red wines like Chianti and Barlol. If you are serving something a fried appetizer, consider serving a crisp, fruity white or red wine to support cut the oily flavor.
Beef, Steak and Lamb
Do you do not forget the “red wine with red meat” rule? That one is great to use when serving beef, steak, and lamb. Choose a arid red wine like Cabernet Sauvignon or a burgundy like Pinot Noir. You may likewise consider serving an Italian red such as Barolo or Chianti.
Fish and Seafood
To be safe, stick with a dry, crisp white wine. Sauvignon Blanc goes well with white fish while Sancerre and Muscadet go well with oysters. If you want to be different, undertake a fruity red wine (without tannins). But, use caution when serving red, specially if you are serving white, delicate fish. Cabernets with tannins combined with fish may leave a metallic taste in your mouth.
Poultry, Pork and Veal
For the most part, you want to follow the “white meat, white wine” rule with these. White chardonnays and Pinot Blancs are great. If you want to serve red with chicken, do not forget to choose a wine that is fruity like a Merlot or Zinfandel.
Think back to Thanksgiving. Do you do not forget how well your cranberry sauce went with the turkey? The same rule applies here. For turkey, since it has both white and dark meat, you want something fruity and tart such as a Beaujolais for red or a Riesling for white.
If you are planning on service something spicy like Thai or Indian food, a sparkling wine works best. Avoid wines with tannins and look for something fruity. And, make sure the wine is well chilled. Cold wine goes well with spicy foods.
The best thing to serve with a delicious dessert is a dessert wine. In fact, you may skip the dessert percentage and just serve a dessert wine to your guests. These are sweet wines oftentimes sold in littler bottles as you don’t drink as much dessert wine as you do regular wine. Wines such as Sauternes, Beerenauslese, Bermet and Cammandaria will make a outstanding end to any evening.
The most crucial rule when it comes to what wine to serve is to stay clear from being snobby in regards to wine. There are no right answers, only basic rules to go by and even those, as you have seen, may be changed. Do not be afraid to experiment with dissimilar tastes. Chances are if you do not act like there is anything faulty with the wine you are serving, your guests will not either.
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