wine pairing with food

7 Wine tips to increase your palette

Have you ever been to a restaurant with the intention of buying a glass of wine, only to be handed a binder full of selections to choose from? Well, it’s times like these where knowing a bit about wine can go a long way.

  1. Try not to exclusively drink the best (read: expensive) wine that you can find at all times. Sometimes, you will notice that some of the best tasting wines are medium grade and not the creme of the crop. Explore all types of wine and try them with different meals to determine your favorites. Also note that when you ask for a server’s recommendations, a good server will not exclusively recommend the most expensive.
  2. If you are having red meats, stick to red wine. This is the general principle, and should rarely be veered away from. Red wine helps to bring out the flavor in the steak or meat that you choose and vice versa, giving you the best possible experience. While red wine may also be appropriate for fish, white is never a good balance for steak.
  3. wine and food pairing

    Always pair red wine with steak

    When purchasing a wine for dinner, make sure to ask in the merchant if the wine is ready to drink. Some wines need to age in order for their true flavor to come out. This might mean months or even years should go by before the bottle is enjoyed. By asking if the wine is ready to drink, you have a better chance of walking out with a bottle you will enjoy.

  4. Read everything you can get your hands-on with respect to wine. Check out blogs and reviews. New ones are coming out all the time, and they can be very valuable in helping you select wine that you might enjoy. Hint: when you find a wine you like from a certain reviewer, make a note that you have similar tastes and this a reviewer you should heed reviews from. There are even apps for your phone that can help with wine selection.
  5. Choose your food and wine pairings carefully. Typically, white wine is suitable for light dishes, salads or fish. Red wine goes well with heavier dishes and dark meats. The rule of thumb is the heavier or darker the dish, the darker the wine that you choose. If you have having a multi-course dinner, start with white wine and progress to red wine.
  6. Be mindful of wine experts and what they say, yet also take their considerations with a grain of salt. Any expert worth his weight in salt will admit to his own fallibility. Also, their personal tastes will never identically match your own. You should never allow an expert opinion to override your own feelings.
  7. Go to wine tastings. There are plenty of free wine tastings at restaurants to get patrons in on slower evenings. Check these out to taste wines you may not otherwise, feel comfortable purchasing a full bottle. Here you can also network and make friends with other wine newbies.

As you now know, there is a lot of information to deal with when it comes to wine. However, when you have the right information and put in a little effort, you can be a wine expert in no time. Just make sure to enjoy your wine education, as it is supposed to be fun!

serving wine for dinner parties

Helpful Tips for Choosing Wine

Do you feel like you’re out of the loop when it comes to entertaining or cooking with wine? Don’t be afraid to experiment when it comes to enjoying a good wine. Sure, we all have a favorite stand-by, but that doesn’t mean something different cannot be enjoyed as well. If red is your go-to wine, investigate the possibility of a Pinot Grigio tonight or be really daring and try something you’ve never even heard of!

We all know red wine is a great choice when eating red meats such as steak or beef dishes. Drinking red wine with these foods can really help to bring out the flavor of both the meal and the wine. You can also use the red wine while cooking to help add to the flavor of the meat.

If you are planning to cook with wine, examine your recipe closely. If it calls for dry white wine, this means that the recipe will not work well with a wine that is sweet. Look for a wine that states that it is dry, and you will avoid ruining a potentially fantastic dish.

Don’t shy away from ordering or buying a bottle of something that you can not pronounce the name of. The proprietor or employee is not going to judge you. Don’t deprive yourself of tasting new wines because you can’t speak the name.

When serving wine at a dinner party, try to have at least one variety of red wine and one variety of white wine on hand. While many individuals are not particular to a specific region or winery, most will prefer a red or white. By having both on hand you are sure to please all of your guests with ease.

Before leaving the house and hitting up the local venue, know what you are looking for and have a firm goal set in mind. Leaving without knowing exactly what you want might end up as a night spent hopping hopelessly from cellar-to-cellar. Have a goal ahead of time and when you find the selection that fits, purchase it and return home to enjoy the work.

When you find a bottle of wine that really hits the spot, put away the whole case for a slightly higher price and you’ll save money in the long run. A case is usually 12 bottles of the same age and flavor. The net cost of a single case is reasonably lower than 12 individual bottles in most venues.

Next time you go to buy a bottle of wine, whether to entertain socially or use to cook, you should be more equipped with the right knowledge. Use what you’ve learned here to make things easier on you. Wine can be used to impress, and you now have the tools.