Long summer days are just around the corner. As we emerge from our winter hibernation, those invitations to breezy dinner parties and al fresco barbeques are starting to roll in.
“Just bring a bottle of something,” suggests your host. In winter, this is usually a straightforward choice. A powerful red or a rich full-bodied Chardonnay pairs beautifully with heavyweight foods on a chilly night.
Come Spring, however, and you are faced with some different options. Choosing what to drink with fresher, lighter foods means thinking about more delicate wines – usually white, although low-tannin reds can also work well.
A few rules of thumb to stick to, and you’ll be the toast of the party:
1. Think of the greenery White wines with ‘green’ flavours such as grapefruit, red capsicum or zesty lime suit lovely fresh summery salads.
2. Feeling fruity? The floral aromas in wine are highlighted when you pair them with fruity foods. It’s a natural affinity, and won’t fall flat if your wine has more acidity than the food. If you have a savoury palate, a chilled Rosé works very well with fruity, savoury foods. Think of those Moroccan cous cous salads with dates and oranges, or perhaps a delicate savoury strawberry cream.
4. Something sweet? Then make sure your wine is sweeter than your food, so that its flavours are not lost amongst your decadent dessert.