10 Ways to Wine and Food Pairing
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 10 Ways to Successful Food and Wine Pairing!

  1. Spicy, salty, smoked, and highly seasoned dishes are best paired with wines that are fruity and lower in alcohol such as Riesling, Gewurztraminer, Pinot Gris/Grigio, dry roses, and Pinot Noir. Avoid oaky and more tannic wines. 

  2. Richer, fattier foods pair best with heavier, full-bodied wines such as Chardonnay, Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Zinfandel, and Syrah. 

  3. When pairing sweeter foods with wine, try to keep the sweetness in the dish less than the apparent sweetness of the wine. If necessary, sweetness in the dish can be curbed with a touch of citrus juice or vinegar.

  4. Higher-acid foods, such as goat cheese, tomatoes, and citrus fruits, pair most effectively with higher-acid wines such as Sauvignon/Fume Blanc, some Rieslings, Pinot Gris/Grigio, Zinfandel, and Pinot Noir. If the wine seems too tart for the dish, add a touch of lemon juice or vinegar to the dish. 

  5.  In a meal progression where multiple wines will be served, serve lighter wines before more full-bodied ones. Serve dry wines before sweet ones, unless a dish with some sweetness is served early in the meal, in which case it should be matched with a wine of like sweetness. Serve lower-alcohol wines (Riesling, Sauvignon/Fume Blanc, and Pinot Gris/Grigio) before higher-alcohol ones (Chardonnay, Viognier, Gewurztraminer, Zinfandel, Pinot Noir, Cabernet Sauvignon, and Syrah).

  6. Help connect dishes to the specific wine you're serving by tasting a small amount of the wine as you're finishing a sauce or side dish so that the recipe can be "tweaked" to maximum effect. If the wine seems too tannic or bitter for the dish, a sprinkling of citrus zest or nuts can be added to the dish, for example. 

  7. When using wine in marinades or sauces, use a decent-quality wine. If possible, this should be the same varietal as will be matched with the dish, but it need not be the same exact wine if you wish to drink a better wine than the one with which you're cooking. 

  8. Grilling, roasting, sautéing, and braising are preferred cooking methods when matching dishes with most wines. Poaching and steaming are more delicate cooking methods that work best with more delicate wines such as Pinot Gris/Grigio and some Riesling. Smoking food works most effectively with lighter, fruitier wines-Riesling, Gewurztraminer, Pinot Noir, and Zinfandel. 

  9. Food and wine pairing is about synergy-the food should not overpower the wine, nor should the wine overpower the food.

  10. Great food and wine combinations come from finding similarities and contrasts of flavor, body (texture), intensity, and basic taste. This is a highly subjective, inexact endeavor. Taste, and trust your own instincts.

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