An Introduction to Wine

I will be the first to admit that my knowledge in regards to wine is less than impressive. My close friend, and official foodie mentor, offered to have a wine tasting to help give me a basic knowledge of wine - how to go about tasting the wine, what textures and characteristics each wine should have, and what types of cuisine should be paired with each wine. Three Quick Steps to Wine Tasting:

  1. Look: notice the color, cloudiness, clarity.
  2. Smell: notice the aromas that present themselves to you. are they fruity? earthy? musty?
  3. Taste: notice the sweetness, acidity, tannins, and body of the wine.

We went on a tour of the four most basic, commonly consumed wines:

Scanned Document Sauvignon Blanc  |  Chardonnay  |  Pinot Noir  |  Shiraz

1. Kim Crawford Sauvignon Blanc

lemon juice. texture: crisp & light bodied. pair with anything that you would serve with a fresh squeeze of lemon juice: asparagus, brussels sprouts, bells peppers, chicken, pork, lobster, shrimp, crab, etc.

we paired with: asparagus and shrimp with a lemon garlic aioli

sauvignon blanc pairing

2. Bread & Butter Chardonnay

butter. texture: full bodied & soft. serve with anything that goes well with butter: pastas, corn, sweet potatoes, fish, scallops, chicken, turkey, beef, mushrooms, etc.

we paired with: duck rillettes and caramelized onions on toast with cornichons

chardonnay pairing

3. Leese Fitch Pinot Noir

tartness. texture: light-bodied with soft tannins serve with tangy sauces or to cut through rich foods: mushrooms, truffles, turnips, chicken, lamb, ahi tuna, swordfish, cream sauces, sausages, etc.

we paired with: Scotch eggs, mache, and dijonnaise

pinot noir pairing

4. Rosemount Shiraz

spice box. texture: medium to full-bodied, varying tannins. serve with foods cooked in spices or braised/grilled foods: black pepper, cumin, tarragon, cured meats, chicken, venison, steak, etc.

we paired with: tandoori lamb chops with naan and a spicy masala dipping sauce

shiraz pairing

I am excited to continue on this journey, learn more about wines, and perhaps one day know even 5% of the knowledge of a sommelier.

Note: The smells and flavors that I pulled out of each wine were specific to my opinions. Each person may have their own opinions and different smells or flavors may stand out more than others.