How To Pair Your Wine With The Perfect Pasta Dish
Pasta and wine make the ultimate pair for any homemade dinner. Before you go and buy the wine or make the pasta sauce, think about the flavors you want and what might work best together. Here’s how to pair your wine of choice with the perfect pasta.
There are four main categories of Chardonnay: young and unoaked, fruity and unoaked, full-bodied and oak-aged and mature. Across all four categories of Chardonnay, you’ll be safe with light shellfish dishes like linguine with clams or an orzo with shrimp.
For a full-bodied Chardonnay or an oaked Chardonnay, you could go a little richer with the sauce or the type of pasta, like ravioli with cream sauce or butternut squash gnocchi with a butter and sage sauce. Stick with acidic foods like raw tomatoes, olives and capers. You should avoid funky cheeses and spicy ingredients with Chardonnay.
You’ll find a wide range of Rieslings at the store varying from sweet to dry. Rieslings are known for their balance of acidity and sugar. The acidity makes it an awesome pairing for hearty sauces and high-end meats while also working well with tangy flavors and Asian dishes.
Pair a Riesling with anything from Indian to Mexican to Chinese Szechuan to French cuisine. But for Italian, we’d suggest spaghetti with bucatini alla amatriciana, which has crushed red pepper flakes scattered throughout, along with pancetta, black pepper, onions, tomatoes, garlic and pecorino cheese. Any kind of spicy tomato sauce with your spaghetti or farfalle would work with a Riesling.
The next time you open up a big bottle of bubbly, you’ll want to keep in mind the best flavors for the job. Pair your favorite Champagne with truffle mac and cheese, a pesto pasta salad, or a lemon, garlic, parmesan and shrimp dish. You could also pair your glass of champagne with any pasta dish that has brie cheese. And don’t be shy with the mushrooms. Mushroom risotto, mushroom sauce or stuffed mushrooms are all awesome pairings for Champagne.
When it comes to a full-bodied dark red wine with peppery undertones (like a Cab), it’s time to bring out the short ribs, lamb, mushrooms or cheese. You could pair a Cabernet Sauvignon with penne pasta with short rib ragu or short ribs with tagliatelle. Go with a creamy garlic herb mushroom spaghetti or a rich and creamy pasta dish. Any sauce with rosemary, thyme, mushrooms, goat cheese or garlic will also work well with a full-bodied Cabernet Sauvignon.
Once you find the perfect rosé for your personality, it’s time to pair it with the perfect pasta. Rosé is easy to drink and works well with the majority of recipes out there. With a crisp and refreshing rosé, you can roast asparagus and toss it in with your penne pasta, a little bit of garlic, lemon juice and parmesan. Pair a glass of the pink stuff with creamy corn pasta with basil or one-pot lemon pepper chicken pasta. Stick with all of the summery flavors and light crumbly cheeses when you have a glass of rosé on the table.