Reams and reams of writing have been produced on matching wine and food. Entire books in fact – some of them rather excellent* – have been published on the subject. But in my experience you can boil the ‘facts’ down to five simple rules –
- Regionality Rules – if a dish comes from a specific region or country then it is highly likely the local wines will turn out to be perfect accompaniments.
- Match Light with Light – and consequently heavier foods with heavier wines. You don’t want the wine you are drinking to be overwhelmed by the wine and vice versa.
- Match Sweet with Sweeter – a dessert that is sweeter than the wine can make it taste nastily sharp. Select a wine sweeter than the dessert.
- It’s All In The Sauce – if you are struggling to find a wine look to the sauce. How many times have you seen a rear label proclaim ‘good with chicken’? The differences between a spicy chicken curry and a coq au vin are immense.
- What Else We Got? Full flavoured chutneys or salsas can all affect the taste of the wine, you might need to trade up in the body stakes to cope.
* One such recently published book published at the end of last year I am enjoying immensely; review post to come.