Step #4 is the geek step. You can skip this if you’d like, but this is where we get to geek out a bit. There are two basic food and wine flavor-pairing principles worth exploring here: compliment and contrast. Do you want your wine to support the flavors of your dish? In this case, the dish is going to be the star. Or, are you interested in the potential of contrasting flavors that will make the pairing itself the star? It’s a tough decision to make.
You can reach for an herbal wine to compliment your herb-infused dish, or you can grab a fruity wine to offer a distinct contrast to the savory, aromatic notes of those herbs. What works and what doesn’t is of course totally subjective, but a warning is in order. In my experience, it’s much more difficult to mess up a complimentary pairing, though the best pairings do tend to be contrasting. Decisions, decisions! For Thanksgiving, I’ve pretty much given up on geeking out since I share in a lot of the cooking responsibilities and rarely have the time to complete the geek at the table, but it is worth mentioning here.
Photo courtesy kurafire via Flickr/CC
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