A friend asked me for wine suggestions to pair with Chinese food at an outdoor evening family celebration in South Florida. She wants to keep it simple and go with one white and one red. We're using a German Riesling for the white but I'm curious as to people's thoughts about what to use for the red.
If I were able to select a few reds to accompany a few of the specific dishes, this would be fairly easy but the single choice with a diversified menu is a bit more challenging. Anyone have any thoughts?
The menu will include:
pork bao apps
Pan Fried Noodles w/ veggies
Any thoughts on a red that would work well enough across the board?
I typically default to Pinot Noir or Gamay as my versatile reds but I'm curious is anyone has any good suggestions. Thank you very much!
I like unoaked Barbera.
I was just going to write that and then saw your response. Lambrusco can also be fun.
You can also look for unoaked, fruit forward southern Italian reds.
Think cheap Frappato or something similar to Tormaresca Neprica Rosso.
Alternatively - Stolpman Carbonic Sangiovese.
Let's get a little more interesting.
In general anything wok cooked will do well with oaked wine as long as the chef is good at generating wok hei (the smokey flavor that comes from wok cooking). Don't know if you have any seafood dishes in there as well or how the particular flavor profile of some of these preps are spiced but here's my recommendations:
My pick would be a crianza Rioja with about 10 years of age and not a super oaky profile. You'll get a lot of versatility that you would find with some of the other suggestions, but some hooks into the way many of the dishes that have been prepared. Second choice would be a high altitude Garnacha from Spain. A lot of the same characteristics of a Pinot or Barbera but with some aromatic notes that would go well with the dumpling course.
I like the barbera suggestion and was thinking amabile Lambrusco myself.
Lambrusco seconded! (or third'ed?) Also - explore the world of reds with RS, especially the more intense and savory ones - I wouldn't mind some honey chicken or peking duck - and would love some orange beef - with a fine amarone with a good 30-45g/L RS on it.
I like a balanced Washington Syrah, for any duck/red meat applications. If there is a lot of sweetness, I think a mid-range Montepulciano d'Abruzzo (Torre dei Beati, Illuminati, Marina Cvetic) can offer the perceived sweetness and handles spice really well, while still having good structure.
Thumbs up on that Lambrusco call!
All great selections and hopefully you’re seeing a theme here in relation to red wines with a little heightened fruit and sugar levels. It’s fun to create the pairings because there are so many sensations happening in the mouth at once. Have fun with it.
A really delicious pairing I’ve implemented is our Peking Duck with sherry of Oloroso style. (Palo Cortado if guests is a little more adventurous - Love the Gonzalez Byass Leonor)
Mencia from Spain
Thank you Eric. After reading through all the feedback, I'm going with a Lambrusco that should work well given the multitude of flavors in the food.
Decided on a Lambrusco that I've used before and guests enjoyed. Should complement the Mosel Riesling option for the white.
Thank you Kathleen. My Lambrusco choice (the safe one lol) is exactly the theme you pointed out with prominent fruit and some sweetness. Should be fun and we'll see how guests like it.
Having been the former senior sommelier at Hakkasan I had to do similar pairings on a daily basis. I like the Lambrusco call. Other options include Gamay, Barbera or Amarone Another option for futures pairings is sparkling wine or Champagne with a little RS.