Match of the week

Salt cod croquettes and zero dosage champagne

Salt cod croquettes and zero dosage champagne

Even after all this time we still don’t often think of champagne in the context of a meal but a brilliant Champagne Leclerc Briant dinner I went to last week at Berry Bros & Rudd underlined that we might be missing a trick.

Pumpkin and melon soup with rosé

Pumpkin and melon soup with rosé

I don’t know why restaurants don’t put soup on the menu more often, especially on a set lunch menu.

Tête de cochon, chou and chenin blanc

Tête de cochon, chou and chenin blanc

Pork and chenin blanc is a tried and tested pairing but this delicious way of serving it at Le Saint Eutrope in Clermont Ferrand the other day made the wine we were drinking - a Pineau de la Loire from Thierry Puzelat of Clos de Tue-Boeuf - really shine.

 Baked celeriac and blanc de blancs champagne

Baked celeriac and blanc de blancs champagne

Not many producers take food and wine pairing as seriously as champagne house Gosset which sponsors an annual ‘Matchmakers’ competition for young sommeliers and chefs which was held at the Cordon Bleu's Cord restaurant in Fleet Street

Le Petit Aioli and Bandol Rosé

Le Petit Aioli and Bandol Rosé

A classic pairing this week but beautifully executed.

Smashed potatoes and low alcohol IPA

Smashed potatoes and low alcohol IPA

You might not think that potatoes merited a pairing on their own account but then i guess you haven’t tried making Poppy O’Toole’s rosemary and garlic sharers.

 Lamb with Nebbiolo d’Alba

Lamb with Nebbiolo d’Alba

For some reason I always think of beef with nebbiolo and other wines like Bordeaux and rioja with lamb but this combination at one of Bristol’s best restaurants Bulrush the other night was stunning.

Indian seafood and Sollasa Mumbai

Indian seafood and Sollasa Mumbai

Deciding what to drink in an Indian restaurant if you don’t go for beer is always a bit of a challenge but now there’s a new option in the form of Sollasa, a delicious aperitif-type drink that has been created to go with Indian food.

 Roast chicken and ‘Saison’ cider

Roast chicken and ‘Saison’ cider

Even though we might enjoy a glass of cider down the pub it’s not often, I suspect, we open a bottle for friends but given the number of interesting ciders around and the fact they’re bottled in full-size sharing bottles we really should.

 Country-style paté with Gamay

Country-style paté with Gamay

This week’s pairing isn’t rocket science, more a reminder of just how good charcuterie and a juicy red like gamay can be.

Chicken katsu and Feteasca Regala

Chicken katsu and Feteasca Regala

I’ve been wondering lately what the best wine pairing for chicken katsu curry is, a dish you suddenly find everywhere and I’ve found a bottle where I least expected one - from Romania!

Rioja rose and serrano ham crisps

Rioja rose and serrano ham crisps

This is not so much a wine pairing that’s greater than the sum of its parts as a great wine recommendation and food recommendation that happen to go really well together

Roast pork belly and young tempranillo

Roast pork belly and young tempranillo

This week’s match of the week isn’t a new discovery - roast meat with red wine isn’t exactly rocket science - but the fact that it was pork that was going so well with tempranillo rather than the usual lamb or beef intrigued me.

Gyozas and kombucha

Gyozas and kombucha

One of the best discoveries of our recent weekend in Bridport in Dorset was a brilliant small restaurant called Dorshi. You might easily miss it as it’s down an alley off the high street but seek it out. (The alleyway is just to the side of The Bull hotel)

Bacchus and chilli

Bacchus and chilli

The most surprising wine pairing discovery of the year so far is that England’s Bacchus is remarkably good with chilli

 Spaghetti with courgettes, basil, smoked almonds and Bordeaux rosé

Spaghetti with courgettes, basil, smoked almonds and Bordeaux rosé

I was sent a really unusual rosé the other day from biodynamic Bordeaux wine estate Chateau le Puy, their 2019 Rose-Marie.

Assyrtiko and cold herb soup

Assyrtiko and cold herb soup

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.

Artichoke and sheep cheese salad and Ciello bianco

Artichoke and sheep cheese salad and Ciello bianco

Much is made of the difficulty of pairing wine with artichokes but this week’s match of the week proves it’s far from impossible with the right accompaniments

 Pistachio and date cookies with Cavendish Vin de Liqueur

Pistachio and date cookies with Cavendish Vin de Liqueur

An incredible pairing this week and one I’m afraid you’re unlikely to be able to replicate - so far as the wine element is concerned anyway. But there are alternatives which I’ll suggest.

Roast beetroot salad and a juicy Aussie grenache

Roast beetroot salad and a juicy Aussie grenache

I nearly saved this Aussie grenache for my wine of the week it was so good but it made a great match with this beetroot salad too

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