Pairings | Assyrtiko
There are few grapes that bring Greece to mind like Assyrtiko, the saline wonder of the Cyclades. But what do you pair with it? As often, the answer depends on the winemaking style and terroir, because there is not one Assyrtiko (I should know, I recently tried 80 of them.)
With that baked feta and tomato pasta recipe going viral on TikTok, feta is certainly having a moment but what sort of wine do you pair with it?
Cheese and wine is a notorious minefield but is it any easier when the cheese is cooked? See my suggestions to match Mark Hix's delicious recipes in the Independent today:
Calamari or squid is often served as a starter or appetiser with other dishes so you need to bear that in mind when you’re choosing a wine to pair with it. It also depends on the way you prepare it.
It’s true that lamb is one of the most wine-friendly of meats, as at home with red Bordeaux and Rioja as it is with the fruitier wines of the new world. But if you’re looking for a spot-on wine pairing it’s worth thinking just how - and for how long - you’re going to cook it.
This might not sound like the most cutting edge pairing - unless you haven’t heard of assyrtiko which is perfectly possible - but bear with as they say …
As Greece’s best known grape variety you’d probably think of pairing assyrtiko with meze or seafood but as this week’s match of the week shows it’s good away from its home territory too.
Turkish food is not traditionally accompanied by wine. And although the Turks do have a wine industry not much of it makes its way over here. But here are some thoughts on possible pairings for Mark Hix's Turkish inspired recipes in the Independent this weekend"
If you're giving up meat for Lent try these delicious carrot keftedes from Maria Elia's excellent book Smashing Plates, one of the cookbooks that impressed me most last year.
It may feel far from summery in the UK but one can always hope so get yourself into the mood with this lovely recipe from Eleonora Galasso's As the Romans Do.
This is the kind of recipe (or rather idea) that I used to put on my old blog The Frugal Cook. But as I’ve given up on it (I know - I shouldn’t have done) I’m posting it here.
Freshly caught grilled sardines are a treat at this time of year but how easy is it fo find a wine that will go with them? Look to the French and Portuguese for inspiration!
The perfect match for lamb is red wine, right? Well, mostly but not always as Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall's recipes in the Guardian this weekend and my own recent experience have demonstrated
The book I’ve been looking forward to most so far this year has just started being serialised in the Guardian today. It’s by Yotam Ottolenghi who founded two exceptional London restaurants and is simply called Ottolenghi: the Cookbook. l love Ottolenghi's food - it’s so generous and big-flavoured, piled high on bright, colourful platters - you can't fail to be tempted by it. It also lends itself perfectly to entertaining for large numbers at home.
Here's a barbecue I've dug out of the archives - a middle-eastern inspired BBQ from my book Food, Wine and Friends.
With this unseasonably hot weather why not look to Greece for inspiration when you're entertaining. Here's a simple meal for 4 that was inspired by a trip to Greece a few years ago.