You’ve had it with cheese, you’ve had it with steaks, but have you tried your wine with pasta? Amongst the many categories of widely popular food, pasta, like bread, pairs exceptionally well with wine. However, like any other food-and-wine match, make sure that the flavor of your pasta complements the wine in hand, and vice versa.
Not sure how that goes? No worries. We’ve got five pasta and wine pairings, so that the next time you host a dinner party, or go out to eat, you can make a selection like a pro!
Red Wines: Light-bodied
White Wines: Full-bodied
Cheddar, mozzarella, or parmesan blended in a rich, buttery white sauce is a preferred pasta sauce, the Alfredo being the choice of many pasta-lovers. Wine works well with cheese every time. A white wine, such as an oak-aged Chardonnay, consists of a rich creaminess which complements the creaminess of cheese-based pasta.
If you are in the mood for a red, then go for a light-bodied, flowery blend. Pinot Noir or Sangiovese make great partners with cheese-based pasta, especially one with a load of mushrooms and other vegetables.
Red Wines: Medium-bodied
Tomato-based pasta is typically high in acid-content, the tang of the fruit often fused within pieces of chicken or beef. A tart red blend with medium body works well with the acidity of the tomato sauce. Though it sounds like your options are limited, there are a number of common candidates.
For example, Zinfandel (also known as Primitivo) consists of fruity hints and sharp spice-like edge, and pairs perfectly with the meats in tomato pasta. Other options include Sangiovese, Grenache, Rhône Blends and Nero d’Avola.
White Wines: Light-bodied
Pesto pasta, typically based of basil herb, is a favorite in herb pastas, usually paired with nuts for an added flavor and texture. The key to pairing a wine with herb-based pasta is realizing the greens in the pasta are the central focus. Wines, such as Sauvignon Blanc, which have an “herbaceous” touch in a light-body base, make for an amazingly savory blend to sip after every fork of herb-based pasta.
Other white wines you can open up with your pesto pasta include Friuli Sauvignon Blanc, Fiano d’Avellino, Catarratto and Grüner Veltliner.