Wine Matching

Matching wine with food can be a voyage of discovery. Experiment with different styles to see what works for you, and what doesn't work. You may be pleasantly surprised at how well different wines match with your favourite dishes. Below are some of my recommendations but remember experimentation is the spice of life.

Italian & European
Usually a fresh dry white with the first course and then medium/full-bodied reds with the pasta (if Italian) or main course, a more tannic red with cheese, sweet wine with the dessert. If warmer weather, the Italian style is to finish off with Moscato.

White with first course, medium red with main course, fuller/more tannic red with cheese, dessert wine.

Chinese-Cantonese (rice and seafood, stir fried cooking)
Aromatic whites are well suited to this style of food.

Chinese-Peking (roast meats, duck, noodles)
Medium reds – Pinot Noir and Shiraz.

Light white such as Semillon, fruity white such as Riesling with residual sweetness and Gewurztraminer with spicy food.

Rich Shiraz, Zinfandel and Pinot Noir.



Sausages and beef on the barbecue – mainstream rich soft reds
Chicken kebabs – rich Chardonnay or Pinot Noir
Seafood grilled on the BBQ – Rosé; oaked Sauvignon Blanc, older whites

Pool Party Lunch
Very chilled Semillon, Riesling, Sauvignon Blanc; Rosé and light reds, similar to a barbecue

Home Dinner Party
Plan a succession of foods with a different wine to accompany each, eg. Sparkling wine to start, Sauvignon Blanc with prawns, Pinot Noir with chicken or Cabernet with lamb. Dessert wine or Tokay with dessert and coffee.

Special Anniversary Dinner
A special Sparkling wine, maybe Champagne or a top Aussie fizz, followed by a special red – a famous name or an “icon” wine.

Sunday Afternoon Drinks
Try a good Sherry or dessert wine with tea. Maybe a good Sparkling wine with canapés.

A Seafood Night
Fresh prawns and bugs – Sauvignon Blanc, Semillon, Riesling. Marinated char-grilled seafood – aged Semillon and Fume Blanc (i.e. oak matured) Sauvignon Blanc.

Mum’s Roast Leg of Lamb
Pinot Noir or soft Shiraz.

Christmas Dinner
Ham, pork and turkey – Pinot Noir, Sparkling Red, Chardonnay, Asti Spumante or Moscato to finish.

Champagne Breakfast
Go for quality and perhaps a lesser wine if you wish to mix it with fruit juice.

Gift for a Birthday or Anniversary
A special Sparkling wine; a great red; an old Port or Muscat.