Pairings | Champagne & sparkling
Wines to drink with risotto
Like other dishes the perfect wine match for risotto depends on the flavourings for the risotto rather than the rice itself - the lighter the dish, the ligher and fresher the wine.
On the whole I prefer dry crisp white wines with seafood and spring vegetable risottos, but it’s more complicated than simply saying if it’s a fish or a vegetable risotto it’s a light dry white.
A rich crab risotto for instance can take a quite voluptuous rich white like a Viognier or barrel-matured Chardonnay as would a butternut squash risotto. And vegetable risottos such as beetroot and porcini mushroom taste just as good with a red.
However with the River Cafe's risotto con vongole I’d be thinking in terms of a classic Italian white like a Verdicchio, a good Pinot Grigio or a Pinot Bianco which is what they use to cook the dish (why waste it if it’s open?) That would also work perfectly with the delicate risotto con latte which they say also pairs well with a glass of Prosecco (and, I imagine, a sparkling Franciacorta or a glass of Champagne).
Oddly though if you’re making a classic risotto alla Milanese with saffron you’ll also find a red like a Barbera a good match. Saffron is a spice that pairs just as well with red wine as with white.
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