Whether you’re planning on serving poultry, fish or tofu at your annual Christmas dinner, your guests are bound to get thirsty. Avoid confusing their pallets by pairing your dish with a one size fits all wine, and instead refer to our wine pairing cheat sheet for all your holiday spirit needs.
If you’re serving turkey
The main thing to keep in mind about turkey, is that you’re going to want to pair based on how you’ve seasoned and stuffed your turkey, rather than considering the lean meat solo. To compliment a rich and savory turkey dish, we recommend Sauvignon Blanc or Zinfandel, which happens to be a particularly versatile wine. If you’re going light on seasoning, a fruity, flavorful Carignan or Pinot Noir could also work.
If you’re serving a lean meat, such as chicken:
To compliment a lighter and more delicately flavored chicken dish, opt to serve an equally light and delicately flavored wine. Consider an Oaked Chardonnay, Sauvignon Blanc, Riesling, Zinfandel or even a medium bodied Rose.
If you’re serving ham
The saltiness of ham is perfectly complimented by a wine that is light but sweet, like such as a Riesling. A lighter bodied red wine also works, for example a Pinot Noir or Sangiovese.
If you’re serving a rich, fatty meat, such as duck or goose:
To balance out the savory flavors characteristic of a gamey meat, you want a wine with lots of flavor and body to match. Try a red wine high in tannin, such as Pinot Noir or Bordeaux. A fruity Cabernet Sauvignon also goes well with full-flavored foods.
If you’re serving roast beef:
For roast beef, we suggest something full bodied, dry, and tannin heavy such as Bordeaux, Shiraz, Cabernet Sauvignon or a Merlot.
If you’re serving fish:
Like chicken, the delicate flavor of fish calls for a light wine that won’t steal the show. Opt for something moderately dry, like Chenin Blanc, Chardonnay or Champagne.