Pairings | Spaghetti
The ideal pairing does of course depend on how you make your spaghetti alle vongole - the classic Italian dish of spaghetti with white wine and clams - but in my book, the answer is simple: a young, unoaked, Italian white wine.
Spaghetti puttanesca - or 'whore’s spaghetti' to translate it literally - is a full-flavoured pasta dish with strong, punchy flavours but which wine should you match with it?
Spaghetti carbonara - spaghetti with a creamy bacon and egg sauce - is one of my all-time favourite pasta dishes but what’s the best wine pairing for it?
Given the arguments about how to make a bolognese sauce it’s hardly surprising there should be a difference of opinion about what wine to serve with spaghetti bolognese but here’s what I would go for:
There’s a lot of talk about how the wines of a region tend to match its food but that seems truer of Tuscany than almost anywhere else.
That pinot grigio is many people's favourite white wine should come as no surprise - it’s a refreshing, versatile wine that pairs really well with light, summery food and ever-popular Italian staples such as pasta and risotto.
Vermentino is incredibly versatile - a brilliant wine pairing for anything fishy, herby or citrussy and a great wine for spring and summer drinking.
Meatballs are essentially comfort food so you don’t want to drink anything too fancy with them but you do need something equally delicious - usually red in my book
What wine should you pair with your favourite pasta? As you might guess it depends on the sauce rather than the pasta shape.
I stumbled across a recipe for cooking spaghetti in red wine when I was researching my latest book Wine lover's kitchen. It sounded so bizarre I had to give it a try and can vouch for the fact that it’s delicious! It would be a bit expensive to make for a crowd so this quantity is designed to feed 2–3. And my version is dairy-free.
Spaghetti and meatballs is a really rich pasta dish you need to wash down with a refreshing red - preferably Italian.
Normally this weekly post features a specific dish and wine but vermentino goes with so many fish dishes I think it’s worth flagging up its sheer versatility.
Malbec has got so popular it may have become one of your favourite red wines but what are the best kind of dishes to pair with it?
Despite the emphasis that winemakers place on the different crus or terroirs of Chablis three factors seem to me to influence a food match more than any other for most of the Chablis you’ll taste - the age of the wine, the vintage and the degree of oak influence, if any.
This month’s issue of Observer Food Monthly hasa special on TV dinners featuring celebrities talking about their favourite snacks. Very few beverages are mentioned so I thought I’d suggest a few pairings ;-)
This past week has reminded me yet again what a great match Italian whites are for food. Their lack of obvious character means they tend not to stand out in a tasting but they explode into life with a dish.