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FOOD PAIRINGS: BECAUSE WINE IS THE MOST IMPORTANT PART OF ANY MEAL.

The most important part of any meal is the wine that you pair with it. The Booze Exchange is proud to present a fool-proof guide to pairing the perfect wine with whatever meal you're preparing.

We've provided a brief breakdown of which wines pair best with red meat, poultry and fish, and vegetarian or vegan dishes and a simple explanation of each style. Click the wine style to browse The Booze Exchange experts' favourites. Enjoy your wine meal!

Red Meats: Big to Medium Reds

Cabernet Sauvignon: Medium to full-bodied, this is a hit because everyone recognises the style and it's big, bold, taste is something most people like. It's definitely the safest bet.
Shiraz: Medium bodied and easily one of Australia's favourite wine styles. This bold and punchy style has a great, crisp taste, is fruit-forward making it easy to drink, and has lovely floral notes.
Syrah: Medium-bodied and produced with the same grape as the Shiraz. This is a widely overlooked style in Oz, so if you're looking for a great wine that will make you stand out, this is the way to go. It's similar to the Shiraz but less fruit-forward and less floral.
Sangiovese: This is the chameleon of wines, it's soft, simple body pair well with almost any dish. Not sure what you're going to serve for dinner tonight? Play it safe and order the Sangiovese and you're set.
Merlot: Another one of the more popular red styles, the Merlot is a pretty safe bet to serve with meat dishes. They're usually a very structured and complex wines that lean on the dryer side. Merlots are great on their own but are oftened used in blends as well.
Cabernet Franc: The evil cousin of the Sauvignon Blanc, this spunky wine has quite the bite to it. It's medium-bodied and full of flavour, usually with a kick on minerality towards the end. If you're looking for something that will make a statement at the table and a name for yourself at the party, be sure to grab a bottle of our favourite cab franc.
Tempranillo: This is a surprisingly versatile wine and pairs well with most red meat meals. Not surprisingly, it pairs well with Spanish or South American dishes but also with tomato-based dishes such as lasagna or pizza. Not for the faint of heart but definitely one of our favourites.

Fish & Poultry: Medium-light Reds to Sparkling

Sangiovese, Merlot, Cab Franc, Tempranillo: We gave you the run-down above, but these medium bodied reds pair great with poultry options as well. You might be heading into uneasy territory pairing them with a rich fish like a salmon, trout or tuna but are more safe serving a light red like the ones below.

Pinot Noir: Though a bit more inconsistent than most wine styles, pinot noirs are great for that exact same reason: They're exciting. They're a light-bodied red that pack a punch in the category of aroma and taste. They are an early-ripening variety, hence the lighter colour, but this makes the texture very silky or velvety. It makes them the perfect pair to your salmon or tuna dish or for rich cheeses such as goat cheese.

Grenache: The grenache is a bit lesser-known than most wine styles so it'll be sure to raise some eyebrows around the table. A light-bodied red with fresh and invigorating berry flavours, this wine is sure to be a success.

Champagne: As many know, Champagne is a sparkling wine produced only in the region of Champagne, France. This is one wine that will dazzle guests and that infamous pop of the cork almost guarantees a good time! The fresh tingle that this wine provides pairs perfectly with almost any cheese and with a light fish dish.

Prosecco: Though many think that Prosecco is simply the cheaper cousin to champagne, it actually gets it's name from the method in which it is produced. Prosecco is fermented in tank before early bottling and does not undergo the secondary fermentation in bottle nor is it aged extensively. It's taste can range from rather sweet to extremely floral and earthy. We highly recommend the Pizzini Prosecco as it's well-balanced taste is usually a hit with any crowd.

Veggie or Vegan: Light Red to Light, Dry White

Roasted Vegetarian Dishes: Pinot Noirs and Grenache pair well with roasted vegetable dishes because they bring out the warmth and texture of the dish. That luscious, velvety texture of the wine enhances the texture of most vegetarian meals.

As we've said before, the style of the wine is usually defined by the style of the meal. Therefore, it makes sense that a light and crisp vegetable dish would pair perfectly with a light and crisp white wine.

Chardonnay: Arguably the world's most popular white wine, the Chardonnay has a very wide range. While extremely oaky, buttery chardonnay's were popular a couple of decades ago, chardonnays today are being made to be a bit more neutral. The dryness and smooth texture of the chardonnay make it a perfect pair for roasted vegetables.

Sauvignon Blanc: One of the most popular white wines on the market, Sauvignon blancs are a sure-fire hit in the white wine family. Some would say the best SB's are produced in the Adelaide Hills. A very punchy and fruit-forward wine it's also characteristically dry. Semillon are usually blended with Sauvignon Blancs and make the blend a bit more tangy.

Cheers, boozers!

Let us know what you think! Tag us in your pictures and use the hashtag #TBXCocktailHour and if there's a cocktail you'd like us to blog about, email us at boozers@boozeexchange.com.au

 

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