When planning your festive meal, you may want to consider the pairings between your chosen dishes and individual wines. It is a fairly common practice. The motive is to try and find a wine that will make the food even more appealing, and also choose a wine that tastes good with an individual dish. That is the theory, but it is important to remember that it is not written in stone, and it is your individual preferences that really count. In this article, we have some suggestions for you, based on our experience.
A crucial beginning to your festive meal which demands a bold choice of wines
Salmon is a dish rich in flavors that will have a silky smooth texture. It can be served with Avocado toast and cucumber, among others. The wine we suggest is Franciacorta, a bottle aged, sparkling wine from the Province of Brescia. Alternatives would be Soave Classico or Sauvignon Blanc. An ideal way to start your festive meal.
Prawns and other rich shellfish
The heads and bodies of prawns are sweet and carry with them the aroma of the sea. Their flavour is mild, and they need the right wine to frame them. Riesling is a pure wine that has a slightly citrus hint that enhances any shellfish.
Rich Pate and Charcuterie; or Foie Gras
Rich full flavoured Pâté and Foie Gras need a wine that can handle the sheer power of their taste. In our opinion, we believe that Riesling or Sauvignon Blanc is just right. However, if you want something on a sweeter side, choose White Passito.
Turkey can often dry out if not cooked just right, and it is best accompanied by a white wine full-bodied. But then some people prefer to match the Turkey with a medium-bodied red wine. There are many possibilities here to be quite adventurous, and we have a variety of wine selections.
Goose or duck
Not everybody has Turkey, of course. There is also a tradition of having duck during the festive season. Duck is fattier meat and has a richer flavour than Turkey, which will require a rethink with the wines. With either Goose or Duck, we would suggest a Barolo, Chianti,or Montefalco Rosso.
Some people eschew the idea of poultry at Christmas and go for delicious Roast Beef instead. They savor the contrast between the seared outer layer and the softer, sweeter flavour deeper in the joint. When making a bold statement by choosing Beef, you need a wine that will perfectly complement it. Our selection is Cabernet Sauvignon or Bolgheri Rosso.
Turbot or Salmon
The final option that people may choose for a festive meal is Fish. Turbot or Salmon are a firm favourite with some people. We think that Chardonnay from Friuli or even Pinot Noir on the Red side will best enhance this dish.
We must not forget the pudding. After a large festive meal, many people will take longer eating their puddings, lingering over this final dish as they enjoy the conversation. As they enjoy this course, which concludes the meal, it is especially important to find that perfect wine for the dish.
Rich and sticky fruit-based puddings that maybe contain spices offer themselves the perfect partner for a dessert wine that is not quite as sweet as
some. It is an opportunity for the host to make perhaps a surprising selection.
Chocolate Based Puddings
What better wine to accompany the rich taste of chocolate than a dessert wine that is sweeter than most. Alternatively, a Port would suit the bill perfectly.
An increasingly popular dish arriving in the UK from the continent. An opportunity to serve a glass of sparkling wine, perhaps a Prosecco, or even a Moscato d'Asti. Since you can now buy wine online, there is so much more opportunity to experiment with wines like Amarone, Barolo, and Chianti.
Remember, these are just suggestions. Nothing is written in stone. You can try your own ideas or be guided by our selections from Italian Wines. Just as an afterthought, the festive period is also a great time to treat your loved ones to wine gifts, perhaps a gift set for them to enjoy?