Thursday, July 23, 2015

"Cool" Wine Pairings

by Jim Lannen

Whenever you hear about wine, the conversation almost always includes what it pairs with. Full body, light body, oak, vanilla, tobacco, fruit flavors... they all make up the complexity of a wine enabling it to pair well with certain foods.

When you dine with us, our job is to present you with that information to help enhance your dining experience. In addition to a verbal suggestion from your server, our digital menus are also equipped with a feature that pairs items on our menu with the 70+ bottles on our wine list.

If you've read our blog recently, we have promoted our artisinal cheese sampler and our charcuterie plate as a few go-to options for a wine-pairing experience. But what about the dessert course?

For this part of the meal, you generally hear about ports, sherries or even dessert wines themselves. In contrast, I read a recent article that broke down the different wine styles into what pairs best with all different ice creams, gelatos and yogurts.

This time of year, think cool and enjoy a list of wine varietals and suggestions for their dessert counterparts:
  • Syrah or Shiraz is big and bold with blueberry undertones. This wine goes excellent with blueberry vanilla Greek yogurt.
  • Zinfandel is a medium-bodied red where you experience rich berry fruit flavors. You will get its flavors of strawberry or blackberry. Although obvious, look for strawberry cheesecake or raspberry ripple.
  • Merlot is also a medium to full-bodied red where raspberry, cherry and black currant are prominent with spice. Cherry yogurt or raspberry vanilla bean are excellent with this selection.
  • Malbec is a delicious red that goes great with raspberry jam. Ben and Jerry's That's My Jam flavored ice cream.
  • Chardonnay is traditionally oaky with vanilla after aging. Try this one with chocolate chip cookie dough ice cream.
  • Pinot Grigio / Pinot Gris is a more light-bodied wine with a drier flavor. It goes great with lemon-flavored foods. Lemon flavored Greek yogurt is a great way to actually enjoy the summer heat.
  • Reisling is an even lighter white. Vanilla Honey Greek frozen yogurt by Ben and Jerry's is another perfect palate pleaser.
  • Prosecco and Champagne make a great peach bellini... which is why any peach flavored ice cream will make an excellent companion.
  • Rose or White Zinfandel are already sweet enough, but combine this with some sort of berry sorbet. Very light and fruity! 

How often have you thought about pairing wine with an ice cream or gelato? As you see, the possibilities are endless. What better way to cool off and relax after your meal than with any one of these combinations!

Feel free to come check out our wine and gelato selections for yourself!

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