The easiest game in town: food and wine pairing | New Brief out, #153 | The Wine Newsletter

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Per Karlsson portrait Britt Karlsson portraitSome who have just recently entered the world of wine, new wine lovers, recent wine enthusiasts, sometimes says that it is so “difficult” to taste wine. On the contrary! It is the easiest thing in the world to taste wine. The most important thing when you taste wine is if you like it or not, and that, anyone can decide. And everyone is right. And then just put a few words on why.

It’s another thing to “guess right”, but that’s not the main point, that’s not what wine is all about! It is also something that even the most experienced wine taster often fails in. Believe me! (Do not believe those who say that they systematically, or even mostly, get it right. Not until you have exposed that person to a serious blind tasting with unknown wines…)

Almost as easy as this is the sometimes feared, sometimes mystified theme of combining food and wine. Wine and food pairing. It is easy!

How do you learn to combine food and wine in the best way? Need to read long articles about it? Or maybe even thick books? Well, it might be good inspiration, but you do not actually need it to succeed.

In fact, with just a slight exaggeration, most food goes very well with most wines. You will surely have some idea how the food will taste when you plan to cook it, or when you order it in a restaurant, right? You will also have some idea of how the wine will taste that you are thinking of choosing, correct? It is not more difficult than that! Do you have the feeling that it will match well? Then it will be a good pairing. Food and wine in combination is a question of feeling, not of science.

That a Chave Hermitage 2008 would be better than the Hermitage Domaine du Colombier 2011 to a dove in its own jus with cauliflower purée and spinach can be interesting to discuss but in reality it is most likely that both will work perfectly. As will a Chateau Vieux Maillet Pomerol 2004. Or why not, a Baigorri Rioja Garage 2010?

And then it is also very much a question of the circumstances. There are times when a grilled rib eye is perfect with a Barolo, other times this excellent piece of meat really needs a Beaujolais.

Of course it is always interesting to experiment, to try and test, and to discuss. But it is a pity to be too theoretical.

It is above all a mistake to imagine that there are some clear, unambiguous and universally valid rules.

That would only make you nervous about that there might be a “right” and a “wrong”, and then it will easily turn out to be just “wrong.” Wine is a sensual, emotional product so the anguish and anxiety will turn things bad.

Many winemakers who are asked “what is the perfect food pairing to this wine?” about some particular cuvée from a particular vintage often become a little bit perplexed. They hesitate and think and then they might answer “well, it goes well with some meat. Or maybe also some charcuterie and cheese. But of course, a fish in a sauce might work well too. Just have it with something you think will be great!”

That is probably the best advice: just give it a little thought and make a combination that feels right, and that makes you salivate. Then it will never be wrong.

But that does not change the fact that half the fun around the table can be to discuss good food and good wine and how they go best together!

What do you think? Do you agree or are we totally in the moon? Let us know!

Enough of this philosophy!

Food and wine in combination is one of the main themes on all of our wine tours. All tours aims to give you a really great wine experience and unforgettable gastronomic memories. It is important for us. And for you, I hope. Join us on one of our tours and we can discuss which combinations were the best!

Take a look at the travel programs on the schedule below!
Britt & Per

PS: Recommend to your friends to read the Brief !

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What’s on at BKWine Tours

  • South Africa, February 24 – March 7, 2017 (full program coming soon)

For more information please contact us on email or on phone (we’re on French time), or go to our wine travel site on!

We also make custom designed wine tours – on-demand tours for you and a group of friends, for your company (maybe to scout new winegrowers?), for a special event… We can combine winery visits and wine touring with other activities: gastronomic workshops, visit to an oyster farm, truffles hunting, cheese making, and more. More info on the custom designed and bespoke BKWine wine tours and travel here!

This post is also available in: Swedish

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