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Wine and Food Pairing Guide

The Wine Maestro - Food and Wine Matching - Click to view more about The Wine Maestro Carefully selecting a complementary wine to partner a particular dish can bring out the best of both; transforming a good meal or pleasant tipple into a fabulous feast of flavours. Get this partnership wrong and you could end up with a sour taste in your mouth.

The Wine Maestro simplifies the task of wine and food pairing for you, providing informative, straightforward, expert advice & tips, utilising his wealth of knowledge and experience. Enjoy!

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California Zinfandel or Barolo

Recipe:  Hare Casserole
California Zinfandel or Barolo This is a classic game dish and is very rich so will need a very robust wine to accompany it. Zinfandel (red not blush) from California is a gutsy, fruity wine with bags of flavour to match this dish. From Piemonte, North West Italy you can try a Barolo, which is also big and rich with added elegance.
A wine that pairs fantastically well with barbequed, grilled and roasted meats, from a big juicy steak to a rack of pork ribs. The lighter varieties are a fine match for gamier birds, from quail to turkey!

Chilean Merlot or Australian Shiraz

Recipe:  Roast Pheasant with Lemon and Rosemary
Chilean Merlot or Australian Shiraz Pheasant is not so gamey but still needs a robust wine. For fruity notes a Chilean Merlot would fit the bill; for a bit more body drink an Australian Shiraz. Both reds will be a delightful match.
Surprising light and fruity for a red, this wine pairs beautifully with light game, veal and chicken, especially grilled dishes, a good red for rich fish dishes too.

Dry Fino Sherry or Chardonnay d'Oc

Recipe:  Cockle and Smoked Haddock Chowder
Dry Fino Sherry or Chardonnay d'Oc This is a lovely warming soup. You need sherry in the recipe so select a good dry Fino or Manzanilla sherry to cook with and then you have the rest of the bottle to enjoy with the chowder! If you prefer a lighter wine choose a Chardonnay d’Oc, from the South East of France.
The ideal companion for tapas, this dry sherry is the perfect partner for olives. Also good with roasted root vegetables and even sashimi – chill and serve, sherry is so much more than an aperitif!

Muscat de Beaumes de Venise or Moscatel de Valencia

Recipe:  Rhubarb & Cardamon Fool
Muscat de Beaumes de Venise or Moscatel de Valencia Rhubarb dishes are a great match for a sweet wine because of the inherent acidity in the rhubarb emphasises the sweetness of the wine. Try a Muscat, be it the classic Muscat de Beaumes de Venise from the Rhône or Moscatel de Valencia from Spain – a marriage made in heaven!
This delicious dessert wine is wonderful with sweet tarts and pies, from apple to plum or damson. Alternatively, partner with caramelised desserts, or even a slice of blue veined cheese.

Navarra Rosado or Alsace Pinot Gris

Recipe:  Scallops and Chorizo
Navarra Rosado or Alsace Pinot Gris Scallops, chorizo; fishy plumpness, meaty spice; red or white? Do you know what I shall recommend a rosé from Navarra, Northern Spain. Made with Garnacha grapes this is a dry, fruity pink wine with enough body to stand up to the spiciness of the chorizo as well as complementing the scallops. If your prefer white choose one with a touch of spice, such as Alsace Pinot Gris.
Oh, a fabulous partner for chorizo, try with Patatas a la Riojana (potatoes with chorizo) or pair with a plentiful paella; this versatile wine is as good with seafood as it is pork, and holds up well to a punch of spice.

Vinho Verde or Douro Red

Recipe:  Caldo Verde (Portuguese Green Soup)
Vinho Verde or Douro Red This robust Portuguese soup is a speciality of the northern region of Minho, which is also the home of Vinho Verde which would be a fine match. But make sure that it is the drier style, not the wine in the jolly bedside table lamp bottles! If you prefer red go for a red table wine from the Douro where Port is made.
This citrusy Portuguese wine pairs wonderfully with grilled sardines, fried fish and lightly cooked prawns. Alternatively try with smoked salmon or sushi.

White Burgundy -Puligny Montrachet

Recipe:  Simple Pan Fried Turbot
White Burgundy -Puligny Montrachet Turbot is a regal fish and when it’s cooked as simply as in this recipe it deserves a really good white Burgundy. Treat yourself to a Puligny Montrachet or, less expensively, a Pouilly Fuissé.
This beautiful buttery Chardonnay is superb with simple poached or lightly sautéed white fleshed fish, chicken and veal dishes, especially those with buttery sauces, though hold back on the garlic & herbs!

White Colombard or Pacherenc Vic Bilh

Recipe:  Carrot & Garlic Salad
White Colombard or Pacherenc Vic Bilh Egg and salad often pose problems when trying to select a wine because of the clash of flavours. However I would enjoy a white wine from the west of France, such as a Colombard (from Armagnac country) or from further south, Pacherenc Vic Bilh. Both dry with characterful flavour, both would be fine matches.
A great wine to compliment grilled fish with lemon, herb and garlic butter dishes, creamy chicken dishes, chilled summer soups, or vegetable stir-fries.
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