Pairing wine and food is not always the easiest of things to do. Whether preparing a dinner for a special occasion or just a meal for friends, wine and food pairing can be a real challenge, I have always struggled with the combination.
Durban Country Club Executive Chef, Xanthos Giannakopoulos has some tips and rules that will help host the unforgettable food and wine pairings.
Find balance in the wine to be served on the evening from starters through to the end depending on the number of course.
Start with a welcome drink and appetiser, a good Champagne, a Chenin with a light nibbles avoid salty food that will conflict with the acidity.
Plan the menu around the tasting of wine you have selected, read and understand in the tasting notes and complexities of the wine and how you can enhance these qualities.
Avoid dominating smells and tastes such as garlic and onion.
For venison’s and lamb, work around Shiraz, Pinotage and some blends
Beef - Cabernet
Fish - Chardonnays, Sauvignon Blanc, and white blends
Pork - Blanc de Noir
Spicy - Gewürztraminer
Dessert - Fortified wines
Cheese - Fortified wines
Don't forget that part of the fun is the shared food experience, so don't stress the details too much and try to learn something new after each food & wine pairing so that you don't repeat the same mistakes.