Monday, July 30, 2007

Drinking and eating is complicated

Last night I made chicken marsala. Its a difficult dish to pair with. Its chicken, which makes you think white wine. But I make it with a brown/creamy sauce, not quite cream, but not too brothy, and I use real marsala wine, which is not white. Its also very rich. So maybe a lighter red? But I also serve it with a side of fettuccine alfredo. So now we're back to white.

Well, we ended up having the St. Supery Virtu which is 53% Semillon, 47% Sauvignon Blanc.
It was really good with it. I've had it before by itself and didn't care for it as much as I liked it last night-I think the crispness of the sauv blanc was good with the creamy rich food, but it wasn't so sharp that it competed with the food.

But the choice of what we were going to have with it was really a 10 minute conversation. I started thinking about other hard to pair food/wine combos - I mean, even lasagna, which I make really cheesy, is a little hard to pair. You don't what a red that's too full bodied because the melted provolone and mozzarella and ricotta will be overpowered, but its a red sauce so you don't want a white. And Italian food is supposed to be easy to pair since so many italian wines go better with food.

On the flipside, I like Chardonnay. But really, a full bodied, oaky, slightly creamy chardonnay is very hard to pair with. Pork chops is about all I think fits with it- and I don't recall seeing very many recipies in pairing books that call for chardonnay. Even old world style chardonnay, which is less oakey and more minerally, is hard to pair.

Who knew drinking and eating was so complicated?

1 comment:

WinoFriend said...

I've heard that popcorn is the ultimate Chardonney pairing because of the affinity of buttery taste of both. Who knew?