When it comes to choosing wine, people usually fall into a few categories – the confident connoisseur, the creature of habit, or the ‘take a chance with that bottle’ person. If you’re a wine enthusiast, you will probably know the ropes for picking a wine for dinner guests. However, if you’re new to matching wine with food, check out how to pick wine for dinner and get the right balance for everyone at the table.
The first place to start when choosing the best wine to accompany your meal is by finding out your guest preferences. Do they prefer white wine or full-bodied red? If your guests don’t have a preference, choose two bottles to cover a broad spectrum.
Another aspect to consider is the tastes on your menu. Wine shouldn’t overshadow the dishes served, so finding the right balance is key. Think about the flavours and whether they’re light and zesty or rich and bold. White wines are ideal for appetisers and desserts. Red wine is perfect for main courses.
The acidity of the menu is an essential aspect of how to pick wine for dinner. Wines such as Pinot Noir, Sauvignon Blanc, and Riesling have a higher acidity and match perfectly with dishes with a higher acidity such as citrus and tomatoes. Higher acidity options are also the best wines with fish and oily dishes.
Red wine is typically full-bodied and rich, making perfect sense to match it with similar bold foods. A popular red is Cabernet Sauvignon, which is one of the best wines with steak and more elaborate dishes such as Coq Au Vin. It’s also an ideal wine with lamb and other hearty meat dishes.
White wine has a lighter flavour and complements more delicate flavours on the plate. It’s the perfect wine with salmon and other seafood. This wine is also ideal for poultry dishes. Popular choices include Chardonnay, Sauvignon Blanc, and Riesling.
Rosé wine is reasonably versatile with many dishes and is a safe pairing for your guests. There is also the option of sparkling wine, which works well, but stick to a well-rounded wine to cater to everyone’s tastes.
If you’re making an effort to pick the best wine for dinner, be sure to perfect its delivery by serving it at the right temperature.
The perfect drinking temperature for popular wines:
White wine is best served chilled. If possible, uncork or open a bottle of red approximately an hour before serving for the optimum flavour.
There are several elements that go into picking a wine for your dinner, but with these handy tips, you’ll have the perfect complement to your meal.
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