Wine and Food Pairing ¦ Learn how to match wine and Food.
1. If you are in a quandary how to choose wine or how to pair it with specific dishes, consider its origin. A wine from Bordeaux will go perfectly well with a dish originating from that region. In addition, focus on what would go well with the sauce: at least more than giving emphasis to the meat.
2. Do not put wine beside the stove, dishwasher or any heat source in the kitchen. Exposure to heat is the surest way for it to spoil or lose quality. As much as possible do not store your wine in the kitchen as the temperature unreliably fluctuates thereabout. If you have, of course, a wine cabinet such as one of EuroCave’s, the subject would be moot because it will have temperature control.
3. Often, cooking with wine does not require a whole bottle so chances are you will have to contend with leftovers. These should go straight into the refrigerator. You can use one of those WineSave argon canisters to prolong it further. Regardless of whether it is red or white wine, it would last longer inside because of the consistently low temperature. You understand, of course, that they should be properly sealed as well.
4. It is not correct to assume that wines get better with age. A cook worth his salt should know that 99% of wines have to be consumed within five years. Beyond that, one could only expect a radically deteriorated quality.
5. Wine is scientifically proven to be tremendously good for the health. However, it is important to know that there is a small segment of the population who are allergic to wine. Hence, it helps if the cook will inform his diners that wine is an ingredient. This is of course quite moot if we are talking about French cuisine because everyone knows liquor is almost a permanent fixture in its dishes.
6. Avoid cooking wines like a plague. This variety are nothing but abominations and will contain cheap spices, salt and herbs, among other ingredients blended to produce an equally cheap flavor. They will – if not entirely damage the prospects of a perfectly good dish – contribute little to the outcome. Stick with traditional wines. At least, you know how they taste like, hence, how they would complement the array of flavors in a recipe.
7. Do not be fooled in choosing a cheap and poor quality wine because it is not going to be consumed as one but a mere cooking ingredient. Remember that cooking will only eliminate the alcohol content and not the rest of it. So if it tastes bad, no amount of good cooking will save your dish from being thoroughly ruined. The cardinal rule is still at work here: never use a wine you would never care to drink, if it is the only bottle left in the world.
8. When working with sauces, always remember that wine should not overpower the flavor. If you must experiment and infuse more than two varieties, make sure they complement, such as choosing Pinot Grigiot and Merlot because they do go very well together.
9. There are wine types that must be added to a dish later in the cooking process. For example, adding vermouth or sherry prematurely would inevitably dilute its potency and contribution to the flavor.
10. Dishes, soups and sauces using red wine would require longer period of reduction, if the recipe calls for such step in the process. The amount of time will determine the flavor of the sauce as well as its appearance. A sufficiently reduced Madeira sauce, for instance, would have a rich deep brown color.