Pairings | Chorizo
Few people now throw up their hands in horror at the idea of matching red wine with fish. But how many realise just how often you can pair the two?
Rioja - and by that I mean red rioja - is one of the UK's best-loved wines and one of the easiest ones to match with food too.
One of the things I’ve been trying to do in the current crisis is to support local producers and importers who are obviously affected by the closing down of restaurants and pubs.
Few these days dispute that red wine goes with fish - it’s just a question of which wine and how the fish is cooked. Most would accept ‘meaty' steak lookalikes like grilled or spiced tuna or salmon work with Pinot Noir but would hesitate to take it much further than that but last week I found a couple of surprisingly good fish matches at one of my favourite new wine bars 28-50.
There’s still a tendency to think of sherry as an aperitif or just for drinking with tapas but it can go really well with a more substantial dish as I was reminded this week.
You might think that as tortilla generally has carbs of its own it doesn’t need to be stuffed between two slices of bread. Wrong! The Spanish do it so why shouldn’t the rest of us? Particularly if you have leftovers to use up.
I first had this wonderful vegetable stew - a northern Spanish equivalent of a spring vegetable minestrone - in a restaurant in Pamplona and dreamed about it for several years before managing to recreate it.
There are very few occasions on which sausages don't appeal but what’s the best pairing for them?
Cuttlefish is a pain to prepare as Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall points out in the Guardian today but it is particularly delicious to eat. It’s often partnered with robust flavours so you need to think in terms of equally intense flavoured wines.
One of the questions I regularly get asked is what to drink with a special bottle. The general expectation is that I’ll suggest a meal of Michelin-starred quality but as this match of the week shows a rustic dish will do very nicely.
I’m constantly amazed at the stream of good value reds that is coming out of Spain these days. Here’s another - La Copa Tempranillo 2005 from the up and coming Campo de Borja wine region which is situated in Aragon to the north west of Zaragoza. It appears to be made by a co-operative, the Cooperative de Santo Cristo de Magallon but is none the worse for that.
We Brits don't need much encouragement to eat pies. But which is the better match - wine or beer?
The idea of doing a post on wine matches with brussels sprouts might strike you as a tad over the top - after all who eats sprouts on their own? (Answer: me. Whenever I get the chance.)
The idea of drinking champagne with fast food might seem outrageous but you have to believe me it works!
We went to a Portuguese evening at a local cafe, Tart in Bristol last week, which does a monthly supper club. The food was great, especially a main course of cozido, a substantial, saffron-laced stew of chicken, pork, chorizo and beans that would have actually made a meal in itself.
I came across this exuberant garnacha when I was tasting wine at Lea & Sandeman in Notting Hill the other day and it struck me as the most incredible bargain at £8.95 (or £8.25 if you’re buying a case).
If you think of grenache or garnacha as its known in Spain as a rich sense full-bodied red that often hits 15% you need to try this wonderfully vibrant juicy example from Valencia which falls into the category of what Aussies are calling a ‘bright and crunchy’ style of grenache*. (And it’s only 13.5%)