Match of the week | Peruvian-style scallops and Rioja rosado

Match of the week

Peruvian-style scallops and Rioja rosado

I thought it was pretty brave of rioja producer Ramon Bilbao to present their wines at a cutting edge Peruvian restaurant last week. Still, everyone knows rioja goes with Spanish food so why not? You never make new wine pairing discoveries if you don’t push the envelope.

The restaurant was Lima, a modern Peruvian restaurant that is owned by the chef Virgilio Martinez who is ranked 4th in the World 50 Best List. It also has a Michelin star.

The food is not particularly spicy but full of vibrant colours and flavours - this scallop dish of raw scallops with tigers milk and passionfruit sounds like one of those nightmare combinations that shouldn’t work but was absolutely delicious.

It was paired not with a white but their top level Lalomba rosé which as it happens I’d put in my top 30 gastronomic rosés in Decanter a couple of months ago. It’s very clean, fresh and elegant without any overtly fruity flavours and suited the dish perfectly.

Other wines that showed well were the Ramon Bilbao Sauvignon Blanc from Rueda which went with a starter of quinoa with sweet potato and fresh cheese and a really fabulous Andean potato stew with seaweed. The fresh-tasting Ramon Bilbao Vinedos de Altura rioja 2014 was also perfect with a dish of suckling pig.

It can’t have been easy to make the pairings work so successfully so all credit to the chef Robert Ortiz for tailoring his food so well to the wines.

I ate at Lima as a guest of Ramon Bilbao.

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