Traditional recipes

Wine Pairings for Spicy Foods

Wine Pairings for Spicy Foods

Looking for something refreshing to help cool the flames?

Let three simple strategies guide your selections for wines that work with four fiery, flavorful dishes. First, consider sparkling wine; the bubbles help refresh and cleanse the palate. (That's why beer is often a spicy-food standby beverage.) Not in the mood for fizz? Then opt for something sweet. Just as soda can counter spice, an off-dry riesling offers a similarly soothing touch of sweetness—with much less sugar. Finally, avoid wines that are high in alcohol or tannins, which only serve to fan the flames. Fruity whites and reds, with modest alcohol, make thirst-quenching and delicious partners for chile heat.

Curry Chicken
The Argentine white grape torrontés produces aromatic wines that are dry but quaffable with spicy Asian cuisine.

Eating healthy should still be delicious.

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Shrimp Fra Diavolo
Bubbles help beat the heat. "Extra dry" indicates more sweetness than "brut."

Lamb Vindaloo
Lamb prefers red wines. Serve these lighter-bodied, low-tannin reds slightly chilled.

Jerk Pork
Riesling is a classic match with pork dishes; these wine selections are also a perfect complement to sweet-spicy jerk seasoning.


These Food And Wine Pairings Will Change Your Week

Find the perfect bottle for your favorite midweek meal.

We know. Weeknight dinner can be a drag. That&rsquos why we&rsquore providing three popular dishes, paired with wines, so that you don&rsquot have to think about dinner tonight (or the night after, or the night after that). Pairing food and wine isn&rsquot actually that hard. (Take it from this writer who happens to be a Certified Sommelier.) It just comes down to a few basic principles.

  • Pair similar flavors with similar flavors (spicy wines with spicy foods, for instance, or crisp wines with acidic foods).
  • Or, pair polar opposites (high-acid wines with rich foods or sweet wines with spicy foods).
  • You can also pair foods and wines that grow in the same area (Brittany oysters with Loire Valley Sauvignon Blanc or Pacific Coast salmon with Oregon Pinot Noir).

The idea behind pairing food and wine from the same region is that the two share the same terroir, a French word that refers to how a particular place&rsquos soil, climate, and water influence the flavors of local wines and foods.

Still, you may feel wary about taking the reins as your home&rsquos resident sommelier. That&rsquos where Firstleaf comes in. Firstleaf offers award-winning wines at up to 60 percent off retail prices. An introductory quiz helps define what you do and don&rsquot like when it comes to wine, from color to sweetness to overall style. A shipment of six wines is then curated specifically for you.

How does Firstleaf get your palate so right? They ask targeted questions about what you like to eat and drink (some of the tasting cues include briny olives, earthy mushrooms, and bright citrus). Once you start rating their wines, they can predict what to send you next with 98% accuracy. The end result is a selection of wines that really speaks to what you like to drink. Read on for what to pair with three of our favorite dishes.


Rosé

Photo courtesy of Hospitality Marketplace

Once considered second-rate by the wine world, rosé has made a fantastic comeback over the past few years. A popular choice, especially in summer, rosé boasts the best of both worlds when it comes to wine—embodying some of the best aspects of both red and white all in one bottle. So how is it different from other wines?

It’s all in the winemaking technique. Rosé is made from dark-colored red wine grapes that are macerated with their skins on, which creates its beautiful blush color. The skins are then removed after several hours, followed by the usual fermentation process. Because the skins are removed early on, rosé develops some of the same color and flavor characteristics as red wine, yet without the bitter tannins.

Like red wine, rosés are made from a variety of different grapes and come in a vast selection of styles. This versatile wine takes on a multitude of different flavor personalities as well—from light and dry, to elegant and fruity, to bubbly champagnes and other sparkling options. To demystify all the food-pairing choices, simply look at the color.

As the award-winning food and drink author Jeanette Hurt explains in her post for Wisconsin Cheese, “Light, delicate rosés are generally a subtle pink, while full-bodied rosés have deeper hues of salmon or pink.” So how do we know what to serve with this mind-boggling array of pretty pink wines? Remember this rule: Richer colors complement more intense flavors. Here’s your go-to list of perfect pairings.

Smell the Rosés

  • Sushi, lobster, salmon, tuna, paella, grilled chicken, lamb, duck, barbecue
  • Olives, garlic, anchovies, tapenade, patés, salad Niçoise, light pasta, mildly spicy curry and rice dishes
  • Fresh strawberries, pears, cantaloupe, honeydew, watermelon, raspberries, blackberries, red plums
  • Brie, fresh mozzarella, chèvre, feta, mascarpone, baby Swiss, Gouda, Gruyère, fontina, Colby, young and aged Cheddar, Havarti, Manchego, Pecorino Romano

Sparkling Rosés and Rosé Champagnes

  • Lighter styles prefer pairings with tapas, citrusy salads, sushi, seafood, and even canapés, cakes, fruit tarts, and muffins
  • Dry sparkling rosés pair well with fatty, fried foods, spicy dishes, and barbecue
  • More robust champagnes can pair with grilled lobster, lamb, or even pheasant and grouse
  • Strawberries, blueberries, raspberries, blackberries
  • Camembert, Brie, chèvre, ricotta, and feta

The Best Recipes to Pair with Riesling

Riesling&aposs crisp, palate-refreshing acidity helps explain its well-earned reputation as an exceptional food wine. Find out what to pair with one of the world&aposs great food wines.

Riesling is frequently bright with acidity and, depending on where it&aposs grown, on the low-alcohol side, with flavors of apple and citrus.

Depending on the age of the wine, Riesling offers a wide range of aromas -- fruit aromas like green apples and limes, peaches and grapefruit, floral aromas like honeysuckle earthy smells like mineral and slate as well as some unexpected aromas like diesel fuel and toast.

Despite being so food-friendly, Riesling is often overlooked when we&aposre deciding on a dinner wine. Why all this neglect? Some of it could be the baffling wine labels on German Rieslings: So many long German words, so little sense to make of them. Or it could be that sometimes Rieslings are somewhat sweet, though they can also be quite dry ("dry" simply means "not sweet")-- Rieslings really run the full gamut.

But don&apost be turned off by a little sweetness. It&aposs a trademark of Riesling that even the sweet versions will offer enough palate-refreshing acidity to keep things balanced, so they&aposre still crisp rather than cloying. If you&aposre not sure if it&aposs dry or sweet, just ask the wine merchant.


15 Regional Food and Wine Pairings

I’m so pleased to welcome David from Cooking Chat to share a guest post about food and wine pairings. You can read more about David and his blog in this blogger spotlight.

One of my favorite things about cooking is finding great food and wine pairings. With the best pairings, the wine enhances the taste of the food, and the wine shines better when enjoying it along with the dish.

There are a lot of wine pairing rules to ignore, or at least take with a grain of salt. For instance, some people think you need to go with a white wine for fish. You will find a couple of good red wine pairings in this article to show you that one doesn’t always work.

The one wine pairing tip that is bound to serve you well is captured in the adage “what grows together, goes together.” In other words, wine regions often have a food and wine culture that has evolved over time, leading to food and wine pairings that really sing.

I have assembled 15 great regional food and wine pairings that illustrate this what grows together, goes together concept. We have a combination of classic regional recipes, and creative recipes inspired by the ingredients of the wine region. Thanks to the talented group of food and wine bloggers that shared their ideas! Recipes that don’t mention a specific blogger are my own Cooking Chat creations.

Ligurian Pesto Pasta with a Crisp White Wine

I love pesto and Italian food & wine pairings, so this I figured this would be a great place to start this roundup. Liguria is an Italian region on the Mediterranean coast near the border with France. Genoa is the big city in Liguria, and the area is famous for its basil pesto. Any crisp Ligurian white wine with a pesto dish is bound to be a great combination. If you want to really eat like a Ligurian local, try our Ligurian Pesto Pasta and track down a bottle of Punta Crena Pigato to go with it!

Piemonte: Porcini Mushroom Risotto with a Nebbiolo

The Piemonte region (also referred to as the “Piedmont” in English) in Northeastern Italy is home to some impressive wines made from the Nebbiolo grape. Barolo and Barbaresco are special wines made from Nebbiolo from designated areas in the Piedmont. Those are great wines to enjoy, but you can also find some good quality, affordable Piedmont wines that simply goes by Nebbiolo on the label.

I find the earthy characteristics of truffles and porcini mushrooms, with can be found in Northern Italy, pair very well with Nebbiolo. So for a Piemonte pairing, try our Porcini Mushroom Risotto with a Nebbiolo.

Tuscan Beef Stew with a Chianti

Tuscany is a source for so many wonderful wines and great food! Our Tuscan Beef Stew recipe cooks slowly with Italian herbs, and is wonderful paired with a good Chianti. If you want something lighter from Tuscany try our Tuscan Kale Pasta with a Vernaccia, a white wine often found in San Gimignano.

Northern Burgundy Served with Rabbit

Jeff from foodwineclick moves us from Italy to another country full of classic wine regions. Jeff serves up Rabbit with Mustard and Cornichons with a white and red wine from Burgundy, one of my favorite wine regions. If you’re new to French wine, it’s helpful to know that white Burgundy is typically made from Chardonnay grapes, and red from Pinot Noir. But the Burgundian version of these grapes is likely to taste much different from “New World” styles you might find from California.

Choucroute Garnis with Pinot Blanc From Alsace

Moving to the French border with Germany, we have Alsace regional wine pairing from Jeff. Choucroute Garnis , basically a fancy version of kielbasa and sauerkraut, packs a lot of flavor with some extra spices and mustard. Sounds perfect paired with a Pinot Blanc from Alsace!

Chicken Cassoulet Paired with Languedoc Red Wine

Some of the wine pairing recipes in this article are inspired by the wine region, as opposed to being a traditional recipe. Not the case with this one! Cassoulet is a classic regional dish from the Languedoc region of Southern France. There are many variations on the recipe, but they all involve slowly cooking a combination of sausage, beans and meat and/or poultry for some hearty comfort food. Our Chicken Cassoulet is a bit healthier than some versions, but doesn’t skimp on flavor! Our post gives you a few suggestions of good earthy Languedoc red wine blends to try. If you can’t find these bottles, ask for suggestions at your local wine shop.

Indian Spiced Beef Bordeaux

Wendy from a Day in the Life on the Farm adds a little Indian spice to a traditional Bordeaux beef meal with this Indian Spiced Beef Bordeaux recipe . Sounds tasty! Pairs with with a Bordeaux red wine blend.

Stuffed Calamari and Salsa Verde with a Greek White Wine

Nicole from Somm’s Table brings us to the Greek coast, conjuring up visions of enjoying fried calamari with a crisp Greek wine. If your trip to Greece is just going to be a virtual one based on what you cook up in your kitchen, try making her Stuffed Calamari and Salsa Verde ! Nicole serves the calamari with the Greek white wine Roditis if you can’t find that you might try other Greek whites and let us know how you liked it.

The Best Portuguese Kale Soup with Portuguese Red Wine

After a lot of experimenting, we have perfected the Best Portuguese Kale Soup recipe! We have made a few tweaks on the classic version, with tasty results. This hearty soup with kale and spicy sausage calls out for a Portuguese red blend. For some great background on Portuguese wine and food, check out How Portugal’s History Effects Its Culinary and Wine Culture , by Lori from Dracaena Wines .

Chicken and Eggplant Paella with a Spanish Tempranillo

Paella is a great Spanish dish to feature in this regional food and wine pairings roundup. Jane from Always Ravenous brings us Chicken and Eggplant Paella , inspired by the cuisine of the Spanish Navarra region. She serves it with a Tempranillo from that region. Yum!

Rosemary Roasted Cornish Hens with Geyser Peak Sauvignon Blanc

Cornish hens are a readily available yet under used ingredient. Like other members of the poultry family they can be prepared in a variety of ways. Rosemary Roasted Cornish Hens with vegetables from Family Around the Table pairs nicely with Geyser Peak Sauvignon Blanc from the Russian River Valley of Sonoma County, California

Frikkadel with Sheba Sauce and South African Cabernet Sauvignon

Time to jump to another continent! With that move, we start exploring New World wine pairings. Sarah from Curious Cuisiniere brings us a delicious, authentic pairing from South Africa. She serves up Frikkadel , a lightly spiced South African meatball dish with an herby tomato sauce. A Cabernet Sauvignon from South Africa is just the thing to serve with this specialty!

Grilled Tuna with Eggplant, Peppers and a Paso Syrah

For one of my first Wine Pairing Weekend posts, I was looking to cook up a recipe inspired by the ingredients of Paso Robles wine region. The result was this Grilled Tuna with Eggplant and Peppers recipe , which pairs nice with a Syrah from Paso.

Whole Rainbow Trout and Oregon Chardonnay

Jade from the Tasting Pour asked if I wanted to include something from Oregon in this regional food and wine roundup. Of course! I love Oregon wine, especially the Pinot Noir. Jade serves up the whole fish in her Whole Rainbow Trout along with an Oregon Chardonnay from Stoller Vineyards. Definitely a lot of great Pacific Northwest going on there! While we’re in that region, you might also want to check out Jade’s adventures harvesting mussels on the Oregon coast, and her recipes for cooking them up…enjoyed with more Oregon wine, of course!

Big Reds and Grilled Favorites from Argentina

If you’ve ever been to Argentina or a restaurant featuring its cuisine, you know that grilled meats play a central place in the country’s food. So it’s no surprise you are going to want some big red wines to go with it fortunately Argentina produces many good ones. Jane served Lamb and Eggplant Skewers with Chimichurri sauce, and covers several good wines in the same article. Speaking of chimichurri, the classic sauce from Argentina, you might want to try my Awesome Avocado Steak Tacos which adds avocado to the basic chimichurri.


The whites (dry to sweet)

When pairing food and wine, including herbs and spices, it’s best to follow these rules. If a glass of dry white is in your hand, sprinkle chives, tarragon, garlic, basil and sesame. For a sweeter glass choose a spice to contrast, like ginger or rosemary.

This is similar for desserts. A dry white will love tasty citrus notes like sharp sorbet or lemon meringue pie, while sweet wine is best matched with banana bread, apple pie and caramel.

This popular dry white wine is full of summer notes with fruity honeydew, melon, nectarine and peach. Hints of sharp lime balance the sweet pear. Fresh flavours like green vegetables, crisp apples, citrus fruits as well as potatoes, pasta and even chips all go well with Sauvignon Blanc. Enjoy a chilled glass with roasted turkey, smoked fish like salmon, salty oysters and feta or goat's cheese salad.

Chardonnay has rich flavours and is easy to Enjoy. Savour its sweet vanilla aromas and honeyed peach and crisp apple notes. Fruity in taste, Chardonnay is the perfect addition to meals which include soft and hard cheese, chicken, pork, salmon, shellfish and potatoes. Enjoy chardonnay with creamy pastas, roasted veg and hearty lasagne.

Light-bodied and floral, Pinot Grigio is one of the sweeter white wines. You’ll be able to taste the tart green apple, fruity citrus and peachy undertones. Fish and white meats are great food pairings for Pinot Grigio. Enjoy with poultry, spicy pasta, cheese pizza and green veg.

Moscato is a fruity wine, full of peach and apricot notes and a crisp finish perfect for a summer’s day. Pair this sweet wine with sweet treats like fresh fruit and sweet, sticky ribs. It is also good to enjoy with spicy foods as the sweetness tames the spice. Enjoy with soft cheese, smoked meats, tandori chicken, potatoes and light, flaky fish.


5 Wines to Drink With Spicy Asian Food

Despite the prevailing notion that spicy foods are difficult to pair with wine, I set the stage with some fiery Asian cuisine and decided to put the theory to the test. This quest was prompted by an annual project that happens at my house. Over the summer, we dry, crush, and blend our garden’s various chili peppers. The result is a potent and flavorful source of heat that I would usually quench with a good pilsner or a margarita, but rules must be broken.

The Wines

I hit the wine store and selected wines that traditionally complement spicy foods. I chose fruit-forward, low alcohol wines, with low tannins and minimal oak, that are best served chilled. I invited over some friends and prepared a spread of spicy Asian-inspired dishes, serving them alongside our wine selections.

1. Riesling: This is considered the classic pairing with spicy food because of the varietal’s intense fruit concentration and natural acidity, often complemented with sweetness. I chose two slightly sweet versions from Germany, where it is the country’s most widely planted grape variety.


Wine Pairings for Spicy Foods - Recipes

info@cgtwines.com CGT Blog

What’s better than good wine and good food?

Looking to pair something with your favorite CGT wine? Need the perfect wine for your dinner party? Let our wine pairing tool help you find the perfect match for our world class wines.

Dry Riesling Semidry Riesling Late Harvest Riesling Block Twelve We captured the essence of Riesling in this palate pleasing, off-dry style specialty white wine. By cool fermenting and crafting in stainless steel, this wine offers a combination of mineral, fruit-forward aromatics, delicate citrus, ripe melon, pineapple, and viscosity.

Pair with:
Meat and Cheese, Peanutbutter Pad Thai, Pizza, Chicken Wellington, Cajun, Grilled Panini Whole Cluster Block Twelve Riesling Ice Wine MichMash Riesling GTS Sweet Harvest Riesling GTS Semidry Riesling Dry Riesling Semidry Riesling Late Harvest Riesling Dry Riesling This expressive dry white wine is crisp, fruity, and fresh. Along with mineral notes, the well-cut acidity gives this Riesling a taut structure to balance flavors of crisp Granny Smith, white grapefruit, quince jam and honeycomb. These intricate flavors are matched with a steely-dry finish.

Pair with:
Seafood, Shellfish, White Sauce Pasta, Chicken Picatta, Pork Tenderloin, Fish Tacos, Green Bean Casserole, Stuffing, Turkey, Mac and Cheese Whole Cluster Block Twelve Riesling Ice Wine MichMash Riesling GTS Sweet Harvest Riesling GTS Semidry Riesling Dry Riesling Semidry Riesling Late Harvest Riesling SemiDry Riesling We craft all of our Grand Traverse Select wines to pair well with the foods that wine lovers enjoy on their dinner tables. In this semidry riesling, flavors of ripe apple, lemony-citrus and pear come together with a slight sweetness to provide an exceptional white wine for most any occasion.

Pair with:
Barbecue, Poultry, Salads, Burgers, Fish, Pizza Whole Cluster Block Twelve Riesling Ice Wine MichMash Riesling GTS Sweet Harvest Riesling GTS Semidry Riesling Dry Riesling Semidry Riesling Late Harvest Riesling GTS Sweet Harvest Riesling We craft all of our Grand Traverse Select wines to pair well with the foods that wine lovers enjoy on their dinner tables. This sweet Riesling wine abounds with flavors of ripe peach, apricot, melon, and honey. A perfect wine to serve with rich and savory foods.

Pair with:
Barbecue, Ribs, Ham, Pork, Poultry, Stir Fry, Panked Salmon, Cherries, Watermelon Whole Cluster Block Twelve Riesling Ice Wine MichMash Riesling GTS Sweet Harvest Riesling GTS Semidry Riesling Dry Riesling Semidry Riesling Late Harvest Riesling Late Harvest Riesling This exceptional Late Harvest Riesling abounds with dazzling fruit and crisp citrus flavors balanced with a naturally sweet finish. Aromas of honey and vanilla lead to a soft and creamy palate combined with plenty of tropical and stone fruit.

Pair with:
Cheese and Fruit, Roast Pork, Glazed Ham, Poultry, Barbecue, S'mores, Pumpkin Pie, Apple Pie Whole Cluster Block Twelve Riesling Ice Wine MichMash Riesling GTS Sweet Harvest Riesling GTS Semidry Riesling Dry Riesling Semidry Riesling Late Harvest Riesling MichMash Riesling This semisweet Riesling wine offers bright flavors of ripe pear and honey-crisp, accented with refreshing acidity and light citrus flavors. It is perfect for every day entertaining as well as serving with a variety of foods.

Pair with:
Whole Cluster Block Twelve Riesling Ice Wine MichMash Riesling GTS Sweet Harvest Riesling GTS Semidry Riesling Dry Riesling Semidry Riesling Late Harvest Riesling Riesling Ice Wine This rich, almost nectar-like, dessert wine comes alive with flavors of ripe pineapple, golden raisins, dried apricot, and ripe lemon. Aromas of honeysuckle and sweet herbs lead to a bold and luscious palate combined with notes of ripe grapefruit and honey to finish.

Pair with:
Dessert, Dark Chocolate, Cheese and Fruits, White Chocolate Whole Cluster Block Twelve Riesling Ice Wine MichMash Riesling GTS Sweet Harvest Riesling GTS Semidry Riesling Dry Riesling Semidry Riesling Late Harvest Riesling Semidry Riesling Flavors of ripe pear and Honey Crisp, accented by scents of Meyer lemon and acacia honey. Very refreshing acidity extends the finish.

Pair with:
Most any dish, Stir Fry, Barbecue, Indian Cuisine Whole Cluster Block Twelve Riesling Ice Wine MichMash Riesling GTS Sweet Harvest Riesling GTS Semidry Riesling Dry Riesling Semidry Riesling Late Harvest Riesling Whole Cluster This is positively an awesome Riesling! Let it shine with crisp aromatic style, bright fruit and citrus accented with enduring flavors of ripe apple and pear. It was made from hand-picked grape clusters pressed “whole” without any de-stemming or crushing. The resulting wine is sleek and minerally with just a touch of natural sweetness for balance.

Pair with:
Cured Meats, Black Bean Burger, Salmon, Turkey Sandwich, Fish Tacos, Licorice Whole Cluster Block Twelve Riesling Ice Wine MichMash Riesling GTS Sweet Harvest Riesling GTS Semidry Riesling

Barrel Fermented Chardonnay Late Harvest Chardonnay Etcetera White Botrytis Chardonnay This rich, dessert style wine abounds with flavors of honey, apricot, citrus, and pineapple. A rare release, the naturally occurring botrytis concentrates the essence of the grape, resulting in a dynamic and smooth sweetness.

Pair with: Sweet Potato Casserole, pâté, bleu cheese, honey, cheesecake, or roasted nuts MichMash White Botrytis Chardonnay GTS Pinot Grigio Gewürztraminer Ship of Fools Grüner Veltliner Pinot Grigio Barrel Fermented Chardonnay Late Harvest Chardonnay Etcetera White Barrel Fermented Chardonnay This exceptional quality Chardonnay is bright with crisp and complex falvors. Creamy and well-spiced in French and American oak with nuances of nuts and vanilla, layered with flavors of ripe pear, honeydew melon and baked apple joined by a lively acidity.

Pair with:
Sauteed Mushrooms, Cashew Chicken, Grilled Tuna Steaks, Cheese and Fruit, White Fish, Grilled Cheese and Tomato Bisque, Mac and Cheese MichMash White Botrytis Chardonnay GTS Pinot Grigio Gewürztraminer Ship of Fools Grüner Veltliner Pinot Grigio Barrel Fermented Chardonnay Late Harvest Chardonnay Etcetera White GRÜNER VELTLINER Our small block vineyard provides intense late-season ripening, creating a laid back wine with marvelous lemon and lime qualities, flinty minerality and hints of white pepper. With a clean, off-dry finish, you can just sit back and be your far out self.

Pair with:
Cod, Fried Chicken, Pesto Pasta, Clam Chowder, Chicken Tacos MichMash White Botrytis Chardonnay GTS Pinot Grigio Gewürztraminer Ship of Fools Grüner Veltliner Pinot Grigio Barrel Fermented Chardonnay Late Harvest Chardonnay Etcetera White Ship of Fools This wine is comprised of Pinot Blanc, Pinot Gris, Chardonnay, and Muscat Ottonel, which seem to shine better as a harmonious blend versus individually. This wellstructured wine exhibits lemony citrus flavors, flinty mineral qualities, and aromatic green tea, with a lingering dry finish.

Pair with:
Lake Trout, Cheese, White Sauce Pizza, Garden Salad, Shrimp Stir Fry, Peanut Butter & Jelly, Popcorn MichMash White Botrytis Chardonnay GTS Pinot Grigio Gewürztraminer Ship of Fools Grüner Veltliner Pinot Grigio Barrel Fermented Chardonnay Late Harvest Chardonnay Etcetera White Etcetera White This exquisitely structured white wine offers zesty citrus, melon, and green apple flavors with striking minerality and spice. Pairs with a day at the lake, great company, good friends. Etcetera.

Pair with:
Marguerite Pizza, Mac & Cheese, Grilled Sausage and Peppers, White Fish MichMash White Botrytis Chardonnay GTS Pinot Grigio Gewürztraminer Ship of Fools Grüner Veltliner Pinot Grigio Barrel Fermented Chardonnay Late Harvest Chardonnay Etcetera White Gewürztraminer Robust and spicy with a pronounced aromatic style. Exotic aromas of lychee, citronella, and ginger are matched by ripe flavors of apricot, pear, and starfruit. The palate extends with flavors of rose, ginger, and citrus with earthy nuances.

Pair with:
Thai or Indian dishes, foi gras with fresh dates, smoked chorizo MichMash White Botrytis Chardonnay GTS Pinot Grigio Gewürztraminer Ship of Fools Grüner Veltliner Pinot Grigio Barrel Fermented Chardonnay Late Harvest Chardonnay Etcetera White GTS Pinot Grigio A slightly sweeter wine offering ripe fruit flavors, citrus-herbal qualities, and crisp acidity. This versatile wine pairs beautifully with spicy dishes.

Pair with:
Seafood, salads, poultry, spicy foods. MichMash White Botrytis Chardonnay GTS Pinot Grigio Gewürztraminer Ship of Fools Grüner Veltliner Pinot Grigio Barrel Fermented Chardonnay Late Harvest Chardonnay Etcetera White Late Harvest Chardonnay Soft and creamy palate, combined with plenty of tropical fruit and rich sweetness. Wonderfully scented with vanilla and candied kumquat, this wine is a delicious twist on a classic favorite.

Pair with:
Cajun, Thai, Indian Cuisine, Crème Brulee, Dark Chocolate, White Chocolate, Stilton Cheeses, Apple Pie MichMash White Botrytis Chardonnay GTS Pinot Grigio Gewürztraminer Ship of Fools Grüner Veltliner Pinot Grigio Barrel Fermented Chardonnay Late Harvest Chardonnay Etcetera White MichMash White Aromas of nectarine and green apple, combined with lemony citrus flavors and a touch of sweetness make this is an ideal entertaining and food-oriented wine.

Pair with:
Chicken Alfredo, Stir Fry, Portabello Steak, White Sauce Pasta MichMash White Botrytis Chardonnay GTS Pinot Grigio Gewürztraminer Ship of Fools Grüner Veltliner Pinot Grigio Barrel Fermented Chardonnay Late Harvest Chardonnay Etcetera White Pinot Grigio Bright acidity and beautiful mineral qualities with wonderful fruit. Its floral-citrus flavors and herbaceous style will make this a very food-friendly wine, perfect for summertime.

Pair with:
Seafood, Seared Scallops, Pesto Chicken, Stir Fry, Spicy Foods, Potato Chips, Mac and Cheese MichMash White Botrytis Chardonnay GTS Pinot Grigio Gewürztraminer Ship of Fools Grüner Veltliner Pinot Grigio

Etcetera Red MichMash Red Gamay Noir Reserve Cabernet Franc Reserve This beautifully structured red wine exhibits fragrant aromas of berry, black pepper, dark chocolate, and hints of coffee. The palate comes to life with firm tannins, earthy minerals, and strong oak references from 26-months aging in small oak barrels.

Pair with:
Red Meats, Strong Cheese, Hearty Pasta, Wild Game, Korean Beef Pinot Noir Cabernet Franc Reserve Merlot Reserve GTS Sweet Traverse Red Gamay Noir Etcetera Rosé Pinot Noir Reserve Pinot Noir Rosé Vin Gris Silhouette Etcetera Red MichMash Red Gamay Noir Reserve Etcetera Red This handcrafted red blend reveals mouth quenching acidity, robust berry flavors, and subtle oaky earthiness. Made from a blend of Merlot and Syrah, this balanced wine is made to be enjoyed with any occasion.

Pair with:
Burger, Grilled Salmon, Spicy Paella, Charcuterie Pinot Noir Cabernet Franc Reserve Merlot Reserve GTS Sweet Traverse Red Gamay Noir Etcetera Rosé Pinot Noir Reserve Pinot Noir Rosé Vin Gris Silhouette Etcetera Red MichMash Red Gamay Noir Reserve Etcetera Rosé This handcrafted rosé reveals mouth quenching acidity, robust berry flavors, and subtle oaky earthiness. Made from a blend of Pinot Noir, Gamay Noir, Merlot, and Cabernet Franc, this balanced wine is made for summertime sipping on the patio.

Pair with:
Burger, Grilled Salmon, Spicy Paella, Charcuterie, Enchiladas, Carnitas, Turkey Pinot Noir Cabernet Franc Reserve Merlot Reserve GTS Sweet Traverse Red Gamay Noir Etcetera Rosé Pinot Noir Reserve Pinot Noir Rosé Vin Gris Silhouette Etcetera Red MichMash Red Gamay Noir Reserve Gamay Noir Light bodied and fruity, this wine is refreshingly aromatic with distinct tart cherry, red plum, and wild strawberry flavors, with just a trace of cappuccino.

Pair with:
Cheese and Breads, Grilled Salmon, Roast Duckling, Wild Mushroom Pizza, Pig Roast Pinot Noir Cabernet Franc Reserve Merlot Reserve GTS Sweet Traverse Red Gamay Noir Etcetera Rosé Pinot Noir Reserve Pinot Noir Rosé Vin Gris Silhouette Etcetera Red MichMash Red Gamay Noir Reserve Gamay Noir Reserve This bold and inviting red wine offers earthy flavors, firm tannin, and balanced acidity. Hints of dark cherry, ripe berries, black pepper and light chocolate are highlighted by refined character from 24-months aging in small oak barrels.

Pair with:
Savory Dishes, Red Meats, Grilled Salmon, Wild Game, Lamb, Beef Kabob Pinot Noir Cabernet Franc Reserve Merlot Reserve GTS Sweet Traverse Red Gamay Noir Etcetera Rosé Pinot Noir Reserve Pinot Noir Rosé Vin Gris Silhouette Etcetera Red MichMash Red Gamay Noir Reserve GTS Sweet Traverse Red Made from a selected blend of 100% vinifera grapes, this wine displays a fruity flavor with rich red wine undertones.

Pair with:
Barbecue, Poultry, Salads, Burgers, Fish, Pizza, Cheese and Sausage Pinot Noir Cabernet Franc Reserve Merlot Reserve GTS Sweet Traverse Red Gamay Noir Etcetera Rosé Pinot Noir Reserve Pinot Noir Rosé Vin Gris Silhouette Etcetera Red MichMash Red Gamay Noir Reserve Merlot Reserve Think berries, black pepper, chocolate, espresso, firm acidity, and big tannins. Aged for 26 months in small oak barrels, this full-bodied, dry red wine comes together with captivating flavors and abundant fruit.

Pair with:
Red Meats, Wild Game, Marinara, Hearty Vegetables, Green Coconut Curry Pinot Noir Cabernet Franc Reserve Merlot Reserve GTS Sweet Traverse Red Gamay Noir Etcetera Rosé Pinot Noir Reserve Pinot Noir Rosé Vin Gris Silhouette Etcetera Red MichMash Red Gamay Noir Reserve MichMash Red Full-bodied with juicy flavors of plum and raspberry, matched with dashes of spice and pepper notes, it has a long and generous finish with a touch of berry-like sweetness.

Pair with:
Spicy Foods, Cured Meats/Aged Cheese, Red Sauce Pasta, Chicken Parmesan, Blue Cheese Burger Pinot Noir Cabernet Franc Reserve Merlot Reserve GTS Sweet Traverse Red Gamay Noir Etcetera Rosé Pinot Noir Reserve Pinot Noir Rosé Vin Gris Silhouette Etcetera Red MichMash Red Gamay Noir Reserve Pinot Noir This wine comes alive with flavors of cherry, raspberry and chocolate with medium body, firm tannins and a fruity finish.

Pair with:
Grilled Salmon, Roast Duckling, Wild Game, Dark Chocolate, Meat Lovers Pizza, Carne Asada Tacos, Turkey, Stuffing, Cranberries Pinot Noir Cabernet Franc Reserve Merlot Reserve GTS Sweet Traverse Red Gamay Noir Etcetera Rosé Pinot Noir Reserve Pinot Noir Rosé Vin Gris Silhouette Etcetera Red MichMash Red Gamay Noir Reserve Pinot Noir Reserve This dry red wine has a spirited sort of elegance. It comes alive with delicate cherry and strawberry nuances, mingled with subtle chocolate flavors. Aged for 26 months in small oak barrels, this wine offers refined oak complexity, light tannins, and a lasting finish.

Pair with:
Red Meats, Wild Game, Grilled Fish, Roasted Vegetables, Ostrich Steak, Scotch Egg Pinot Noir Cabernet Franc Reserve Merlot Reserve GTS Sweet Traverse Red Gamay Noir Etcetera Rosé Pinot Noir Reserve Pinot Noir Rosé Vin Gris Silhouette Etcetera Red MichMash Red Gamay Noir Reserve Pinot Noir Rosé Vin Gris With classic salmon hued color and medium body, our Pinot Noir Rosé flourishes with natural crispness as well as sleek and savory texture. A complex bouquet of tart cherry, ripe melon, and slight vanilla evolve with rich mouthfeel and lingering flavor.

Pair with:
Fruit Salad, Chicken Kabobs, Salmon, Salad, Tabouli, Falafal, Poultry, Mac and Cheese Pinot Noir Cabernet Franc Reserve Merlot Reserve GTS Sweet Traverse Red Gamay Noir Etcetera Rosé Pinot Noir Reserve Pinot Noir Rosé Vin Gris Silhouette Etcetera Red MichMash Red Gamay Noir Reserve Silhouette Silhouette is fruity and rich in body, with subtle mellowing from aging for 22 months in new and seasoned French and American oak barrels. Hints of red berries, bittersweet chocolate with a round and smooth texture.

Pair with:
Red Meats, Pastas, Grilled Fare, Barbecue, Pork Belly, Beef Jerky, Tacos, Mashed Potatos and Gravy, Turkey Pinot Noir Cabernet Franc Reserve Merlot Reserve GTS Sweet Traverse Red Gamay Noir Etcetera Rosé Pinot Noir Reserve Pinot Noir Rosé Vin Gris Silhouette

Cherry Riesling Cherry Reserve Cherry Reserve Cherry Wine Cherry Sangria This is a sweeter dessert wine made from pure Northern Michigan cherries. Aged for nine months in small oak barrels, it reveals fragrant cherry aroma and delicious flavor. We added natural cherry juice to sweeten and further integrate flavors and create smooth balance. Serve at 55°-65° F.

Pair with:
Dark Chocolate, Aged Cheeses, Dessert Cherry Riesling Cherry Riesling This unique and flavorful wine was made from our Semidry Riesling Wine and Northern Michigan Cherry Wine. Simply put, this enchanting semidry wine displays crisp, fruity style with a delicate hint of cherry. We recommend serving this versatile wine slightly chilled as an accompaniment to picnic or barbecued fare, as well as cheese and fruit.

Pair with:
Barbecue, Cheese and Fruit, Garden Salads, Grilled Poultry, Grilled Pork, Grilled Fare Cherry Reserve Cherry Wine Cherry Sangria Cherry Riesling Cherry Sangria This is a sweet wine made from Cherry Wine blended with natural lemon, lime, pineapple, banana and orange flavors.

Pair with:
Cherry Reserve Cherry Wine Cherry Sangria Cherry Riesling Cherry Wine This all-natural Cherry Wine is made in a sweeter style and is produced from a variety of tart cherries grown in nearby orchards. We cool fermented this wine in stainless steel tanks to capture the delicate fruit qualities, ripe cherry flavors, and beautiful color. Serve slightly chilled for best flavor.

Pair with:
Barbecue, Cheese and Fruit Cherry Reserve Cherry Wine Cherry Sangria


Top pairings

The best wine to pair with appetizers and hors d'oeuvres rather depends on whether they precede a meal, as is traditional, or, as is the way now, actually ARE the meal. We all seem to enjoy grazing these days.

The challenge is that people tend to serve multiple appetizers at once, each with contrasting flavors and massive variety: cold, hot, heavy, fresh, spicy, and often quite salty. The wines you choose should be palate-cleansing as much as quaffable.

Chances are too, you&rsquore having company, so you&rsquoll also want to pick crowd-pleasing wines that all your friends will enjoy.

A few general guidelines for pairing wine with appetizers:

Sparkling wine

A good choice if the appetizers are performing their traditional role as pre-meal nibbles - particularly good with anything crisp, crunchy or deep-fried. Prosecco will be most people's favourite these days though there are many other good sparkling wines including cava, franciacorta and, of course champagne.

Think fresh, unoaked whites rather than a rich white like chardonnay which is better with a meal. Sauvignon blanc is generally popular but a crisp Italian white like pinot grigio or gavi generally go down well too especially with Italian antipasti. And although many people think they don't like riesling in practice they generally do, especially with spicy snacks. If you enjoy it, go for it!

More challenging as although many people like full-bodied reds like cabernet sauvignon and shiraz they can be a bit heavy at the start of the evening. Think more in terms of medium-bodied reds like pinot noir and merlot and lighter styles of zinfandel.

A great option and not just for summer. Dy rosés from Provence and elsewhere in Southern France are hugely versatile and can stand up to big flavours. A good choice for charcuterie, cheese and tapas.

Not for everyone but if you're into tapas you can't beat a chilled fino or manzanilla sherry. I'd offer the choice of one or two other wines - either white, rosé or red - too though

Wine pairings for popular appetizers

If you are only serving one appetizer here's the type of wine to look for:

Artichokes are tricky and can make wine seem sweeter than it is so make sure your wine is bone dry. Italian whites such as pinot grigio work well or try a chilled fino sherry.

Prosecco, rosé, or an off-dry riesling.

Not only oniony but creamy too. A citrussy sauvignon works well or try a fresh, young chenin blanc

Go for a drier style of prosecco or a Gavi de Gavi.

Bread encased hot-dogs, a Super Bowl Party classic which may steer you towards a beer. Wine-wise I'd be inclined to go for a light, fruity pinot noir.

Pickles need something light, crisp, and fruity to handle the acidity. A sharply flavoured white like a picpoul or pinot grigio should do the trick. Or a dry riesling.

A soft juicy red like a merlot or a sauvignon blanc both work well

Bruschetta and crostini

The classic bruschetta is topped with fresh tomatoes with which you could drink a dry Italian white like pinot grigio or a red like Chianti. Richer toppings like chicken livers are better with a red like a Chianti or Barbera.

Nachos

Again natural beer food but given the melty cheese I'd go for a medium-bodied fruity red rather than a white if you fancy a glass of vino. Merlot or zinfandel would both hit the spot.

Antipasti

With Italian style antipasti I'd generally choose a dry Italian white like a pinot grigio or verdicchio but dry Provençal-style rosé also works really well. As do light Italian reds like Valpolicella, Teroldego and Refosco particularly if your antipasti predominantly consists of cold meats.

Smoked salmon

Champagne (or other champagne-like sparkling wine) is the classic pairing but there are many other options including sauvignon blanc as you can see from this post.

What's not to like about this indulgent snack? Garlic goes really well with sauvignon blanc so you can happily serve that or a juicy red like zinfandel for that matter. And personally I wouldn't be averse to a glass of sparkling wine.

You might also find these posts useful:

Regular contributor Monica Shaw writes mainly about outdoor living and healthy eating. You can find her websites at smarterfitter.com and eatsleepwild.com.

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Comments: 1 (Add)

Slightly confused by the US focus of the article. East of the Atlantic hors d'oeuvres have always been the first part of the meal, the nibbly things are canapés or aperitifs. And the actual foods mentioned - artichoke and spinach dip, buffalo wings, cheese balls, fried pickles, devilled eggs very US


Spice Up Summer with Gewurztraminer Wine Pairings

If you’re getting bored of the usual light white wines we often see served during the summer, it’s time for some Gewurztraminer. These more robust white wines are the perfect pair with grilled foods or spicy dishes of summer. Alsace Gewurztraminer has enough kick to match flavorful dishes while cooling down the heat factor.

One of Alsace’s most distinguished grapes, Gewurztraminer is so underrated and often misunderstood. The biggest misconception? That Gewurztraminer is always sweet. But that is just not the case! Ranging from dry to sweet with every level in between and beautiful, big aromas, a complex structure and flavor notes, it’s a white wine that is ready to play with so many different foods. Especially those foods that are hard to pair with most wines.

Whether you’re bringing wine to a barbecue, ordering spicy takeout or cooking a new recipe at home, take a bottle of Gewurztraminer along for the ride. Check out these pairing ideas to get you started!

Barbecue and Trimbach Gewurztraminer 2013 $22
This spicy, but dry Gewurztraminer with aromas of lychee will cut the smoky flavors from the grill. Try it with grilled pork and pineapple and let the wine play with the sweet and savory flavors. This is the perfect bottle to take to the next cookout you are invited to, even if you aren’t sure what will be on the menu.

Spicy Asian Foods and Meyer-Fonné Gewurztraminer 2016 $24
For spicy foods that are often hard to pair with wine, choose a Gewurztraminer with rich, round notes or a touch of residual sugar. This partifular bottle brings notes of honey and rose to each sip and balances out a dish like spicy Korean chicken wings. The sweeter wine cools things off and refreshes the palate after each finger-lickin’ bite. Write down this wine for football season and remember to pair it with your hot wings during halftime. If you’re anything like us, you know that just sticking to beer all of football season is beyond boring.

The Jalapeño Avocado Margarita

Pizza and Beck-Hartweg Gewurztraminer 2016 $20
How could such an interesting wine pair with a simple pizza? So easily! Basil, fresh burrata, ripe plum tomatoes and olives are made more vibrant and flavorful thanks to the fresh citrus and herbal notes found in this Alsace bottle. It’s pizza night on the patio, but taken up a notch.

Curry and Domaine Saint-Rémy Gewurztraminer Rosenberg 2014 $28
This particular Gewurztraminer bottle is elegant and comes with beautiful aromas of tropical fruits that end with a poke of spice on the finish of each sip. The bright notes and spice are a perfect pair to a flavorful fish curry. It’s a great match… crisp, rich wine with a creamy, spiced curry sauce. This wine is just the motivation you need to finally really master homemade curry!

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