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Wine and Your Grill; How to Pair

Wine and Your Grill; How to Pair

Two of my favorite things about summer are cool, crisp wines and cooking outside. It got me wondering if the same “rules” apply to pairing wine with a good barbecue as with a gourmet meal.

While there are definite similarities (whites with chicken, red with beef) the reasons why were quite interesting. Most of my research comes from Wine Folly but I think the best way to find out is to fire up your grill, head to the nearest discount liquor store and stock up!

For example, they suggest pairing a Zinfandel or Pinot Noir with pork. The high concentrate of fruit in these wines is supposed to complement the pork. You’ll want to be sure to provide hand wipes for your guests or those wine glasses will take all night to wash!

Shiraz and Bordeaux go well with beef as these wines bring out the tobacco and pepper flavors.

Since grilled chicken is often paired with herbs (think lemon pepper or garlic) they suggest Sauvignon Blanc or Riesling to bring out the herbal flavors. I think this would be one of my favorites, and can’t wait to use the herbs from my own garden! 

And lastly, smooth wines with a little “zing” such as Oaked Chardonnay or a White Rioja to bring out the that crisp, grilled fish flavor.

Summer is fairly short here in the northeast, but with good friends, delicious wine and some tasty protein on the grill, you can take advantage of every long summer night!

For more on wine pairings with grilled meats, check out Wine Folly’s article:

Shelley Nicholson

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