Top pairings | 6 of the best matches for spaghetti bolognese

Top pairings

6 of the best matches for spaghetti bolognese

Given the arguments about how to make a bolognese sauce it’s hardly surprising there should be a difference of opinion about what to drink with spaghetti bolognese but here’s what I would go for:

* a medium-bodied Italian red such as an inexpensive Chianti, Montepulciano d’Abruzzo or a simple Sicilian red. It’s the acidity in Italian reds that makes them so refreshing

* Italian grape varieties such as barbera and sangiovese made elsewhere

* inexpensive Languedoc or Roussillon reds

* Zinfandel. Always good with tomato-based pasta sauces

* a dry Italian white like Verdicchio. Surprised? Well, if the sauce is made with white wine or includes milk like Anna del Conte's ragu then you’ll find it will work perfectly well

* a Belgian-style blonde ale or an amber ale. Maybe another surprise but if you use beer rather than wine to make it and include bacon and a little smoked pimenton for a smoky note you’ll find it’s a terrific pairing

Note: obviously this applies to other pasta served with a bolognese sauce. It’s the sauce you match not the pasta shape.

Got other ideas? Do email your favourite pairings to us at greatmatches@matchingfoodandwine.com. To subscribe to our free monthly newsletter and be eligible to enter our fabulous prize draws click here or to get notice of posts as soon as they're published click here.

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Comments: 3 (Add)

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James Morris on October 10 2017 at 17:27

Why inexpensive? Presumably the power of the sauce might overwhelm more complex wines?

Helena Kyriakides on June 21 2016 at 21:43

Like your suggestions. How about keeping it local with wines from Emilia Romagan? In Bologna we eat Bolognese sauce (ragù) with Tagliatelle and love to keep the pairings local. Those from Bologna would probably pair a sparkling or still local Barbera or what they call a Rosso Bologna - usually a blend of Cabernet Sauvignon or Merlot. In the summer, a still Pignoletto Superiore DOCG gets the heads up too and those from Modena would probably pair a Lambrusco Salamino di Santacroce which would work well too.

Stefano from Trieste (Italy) on October 15 2013 at 08:32

Fiona
your suggestions are always very interesting and usefull.
I agree with you when you indicate Verdicchio that is one of the most full bodied white wines of Italy.
I can suggest some whites such as Friulano from COLLIO or COLLI ORIENTALI DEL FRIULI, macereted on the skins that pair very well a bolognese sauce or a pair with a TERRANO from Carso a red with medium body and a great acidity.

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