There are four main factors to consider when deciding on a bottle of wine to go with a meal. Most people look for a bottle to fit the food they feel like having but some experts suggest we do the opposite – to pick your wine before deciding what food to eat. Whichever way we look at it, what’s certain is that some wines go better with certain foods, and many restaurants curate their wine and food menu with harmonious pairings in mind.
Go beyond the basic “red meat-red wine, white meat-white wine” guide and dive a little deeper into your wineglass with these four: acidity, body, aroma and flavour.
Acidity refers to the sour and/or sharp notes in the wine. The higher the acidity, the sharper the sensation on your tongue when you sip your wine.
This is established by the weight and mouthfeel. Run the wine over your tongue for a bit, swallow and feel the flavour on your tongue and roof of your mouth. That’s the body; it can be light, creamy or even oily!
Also known as the ‘bouquet’, the aroma refers to the smell of wine. This could range from simply one or two notes to a complex amalgam of aromas that morph when swirled or oxygenated by surrounding air.
The flavour of wine may seem all the same to the infrequent wine drinker but trust us – sip from two different bottles of wine side-by-side and the world of difference will be apparent. The flavour of a wine is largely influenced by its aromas, so you can expect similar smelling wines to have similar flavours; but they’re always different.
With these in mind, your wine knowledge will have gone a notch higher and you should be better equipped for when the waiter comes to ask you what wine you would like to have for dinner.
*Adapted from an article from our latest issue: A French Affair