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Basics of Italian Wine and Food Pairings

Basics of Italian Wine and Food Pairings | Wines and People |
Sometimes opposites attract, but not always with wine and food. It’s not necessary to always get to mixed up into “what must be drunk with what” according to some wine aficionado’s.  Still, it’s important to remember to always match similar flavors and textures and make sure the intensity of the wine contributes to the flavor of the dish…not over-power it.
  • First, match wine with foods that have similar richness and texture. Think about what is going to bring out the characteristics of both. 
  • Balance tastes. Remember that salty and sour tastes in food will make wines taste milder (fruitier and less acidic), whereas most sweet and savory tastes make wines taste stronger (drier and more astringent).
  • Always try to balance the acidity of the food to the wine. 
  • The wine should always be just as sweet, or sweeter than what you’re eating.
  • Light, Medium and Full-bodied wines: When you are cooking, remember that light body wines like Pinot Grigio or Soave go well with steamed, lightly sauteed, or poached foods. Medium and full-bodied wines like Montepulciano d’Abruzzo, Brunello or Barolo go better with grilled, roasted, or baked dishes that have intense flavors. 
  • Poultry: Game birds such quail, turkey, duck, and squab have earthy flavors that are more robust than chicken. Because of this, you should pair them with wines that can pick up those characteristics of spice and earth. A beautifully balanced Amarone pairs extremely nicely.
  • Fish and Seafood: There is a myth that seafood must be paired with white wine – but it does not always have to be.
  • Consider the region. 

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Curated by

Elisabetta Tosi's curator insight, May 30, 2013 4:04 AM

A good start also for wines from Verona and Veneto...

Wines and People
The Le Marche region has a lot to offer to wine lovers. There are 5 DOCG wines and 16 DOC wines. From the prestigious and famous Verdicchio, to the Vernaccia di Serrapetrona, from the Offida Pecorino to the Offida Passerina. Also: Bianchello del Metauro, Colli Maceratesi, Colli Pesaresi, Esino, Falerio dei Colli Ascolani, I Terreni di Sanseverino, Lacrima di Morro d'Alba, Rosso Conero, Pergola, Rosso Piceno, San Ginesio Many of these wines are little known outside of Italy but visitors to the region have a pleasant surprise when they try the local wine produced by many small aziendas and cantinas.
Curated by Mariano Pallottini