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A Different Perspective on Pairing

A Different Perspective on Pairing

Laurita Winery , wine advice , wine humor , wine pairing 🕔July 10, 2017 0 comments

There are a lot of rules for pairing wine. Red with meats and sauces, white with fish. Tannins complement this and acids clash with that. Sweet wine for the one thing and dry win for the other. A lot of rules…

Most of which we gleefully break on a regular basis!

So we were interested to read an unusual method from Matt Kramer at Wine Spectator. Want to know which wine to serve? Just ask the food!

Strange as it sounds, I often anthropomorphize the ingredient I’m working with or the dish I’m making. “What wine do you like?” I ask my food. I’m sure I could get locked up for admitting this, but I usually get answers.

He credits the inspiration to Lucian Freud, famous painter and lover of wine and food, who wrote, In the end, nothing goes with anything; it’s your own taste that puts things together.”

Although Freud didn’t say so, I suspect that his notion of “your own taste” somehow included the “taste” of his paints, the lighting, and the aura, persona, whatever, of the sitter. Bottom line: It’s not just you, even though it might seem so.

Applied to wine, this means that pairing goes beyond the simple but strict rules of tannin/fat/acid/sweet/etc to an assessment of the entire experience. For example, you can’t very well ask your ingredients about the wine if you’re eating in a restaurant. What then?

I can only tell you what I do: I look at my dining companions. What’s more—and this may shock you—I ignore what they’ve ordered to eat. In choosing wines in restaurants, the pairing, I’ve discovered, is not “what wine goes with the food?” but instead, which wines go with the guests?

We think it’s an excellent perspective on pairing wine, and we’re looking forward to trying it in a situation that calls for unusual pairing techniques… our next food truck festival!

 

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