Best Wines To Pair With Indian Food
A Quick Summary of Indian Cuisine
Indian cuisine is renowned for its layered flavors and the medley of spices involved. Every dish has a unique and complex flavor portfolio that brings out a cascade of exotic spices with intelligible artistry. While it is often believed that almost every Indian dish is spicy, there are several dishes like Paneer Makhani and Malai Tikka that offer a tender balance of spices with sweetness.
Traditional Indian cooking has always been about exploration, given the sheer magnitude of climatic diversity Indian regions have to offer for growing spices. An Indian dish is like a televised drama where every spice, every technique, and every last quirk of the preparation is a character with its own backstory. And wines are no different, so the potential for harmonious Indian food wine pairing is endless.
What Wines Pair Well With Indian Food?
India hosts a variety of cuisines, so when you think about it in terms of flavor, the wine should balance all the elements of the dish. There are some wines that generally go better with spicy foods, some with dishes that have a more salty or sour base, and some with sweet. Lets take Tikka Masala for example. This is a dish that uses a fine mix of spices like coriander seeds, cumin, turmeric, clove, green cardamom, and lots of dry red chili. It usually has a rich gravy made from tomatoes, like Italian food.
Wines For Lamb Vindaloo
With Indian cuisine, German Rieslings are unquestionably the greatest choice. This is due to the modest sweetness that these wines frequently have, which helps to balance out the spicy flavors of these cuisines. Patrick Cappiello is a writer and musician Despite the fact that Riesling is a popular choice, Ill be honest and say that fresh, ice-cold beer would be my first pick. Carol Rzeszewski is the author of this piece Pinot Gris from the Alsatian region has shown to be a good match for Indian cuisine.
- The interplay between food and beverage, in my opinion, is the most significant aspect of bothand this becomes most obvious after youve swallowed or sipped.
- Wines like the Pinot Gris from Alsace have a creamy mouthfeel that pairs well with a lot of the textures found in French cuisine. Tera is represented by Scott Cameron On a regular basis, I prefer to drink wines from areas where the food is grown or produced.
- Im trying to keep the alcohol consumption under control because were serving some extremely highly flavored foods here!
- Spiced foods go well with wines that have a hint of residual sweetness in them.
- The use of demi-sec sparkling wine is also recommended.
- When its time for Indian food, put those large Napa Cabs away. Jason Wagner is the author of this piece Whenever Im looking for white wine, I go for off-dry or phenolic whites, finally rosé, and only rarely red wine.
So Why Choose Wine With A Curry
Sure, beer is an obvious choice with a curry. It is refreshing and easy to gulp if its a little too spicy. But once youve worked out the subtle differences between a Cobra and a Singha beer, youre done. With wine, theres much more to explore.
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First off, we need to sort out what we mean by curry. Are you thinking the British go-to Indian takeaway, or perhaps a Thai curry?
Both share the term curry. Both will need very different wines to make the most of your meal.
Here are our top 10 wine styles to drink with curry.
Wines that will enhance and complement your curry dinner thanks to what youre drinking alongside them. Not, as a beer, to simply accompany them or wash them down. If you have an electric wine dispenser, you dont have to finish the whole bottle you can keep it fresh for up to six weeks!
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A Resurgence In Indian Wine Production
In the 1980s, however, wine production had a revival and returned to India. But due to heavy taxes on imported wine the majority of the domestic wines are understandably consumed within the country. Only 24 million bottles are made per year and about as little as 10 % is exported. The main grapes grown are Shiraz, Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Pinot Noir, Sauvignon Blanc, Chenin Blanc and Chardonnay. The two most essential wine growing areas are Nashik and Nandi Hill. Grover Zampa in the latter is considered one of the finest wineries and has a french wine consultant- Michel Rolland. In total India has about 70 producers, 29 of them are located in Nashik Indias wine capital of sorts. Many wineries here are popular tourist attractions like Sula, Vallonne and Chandon India.
A curiosity is that Chandon since 2013 is producing sparkling wine on Indian soil One Brut made from Chenin Blanc and another, rosé, made from Syrah and Zinfandel. The varieties were carefully selected with regard to the climate and soil in Nashik. This in order to find the most adequate grape varieties to produce great base wines.
So the modern Indias wine market is small but growing. Slowly. The consumption of beer and hard liquor is still widely preferred.
Hoppy Lagers And India Pale Ales
Hops have made a triumphant return, and India Pale Ales are here to stay. Beers made with hops are among of the most widely consumed beverages on the planet, so if you enjoy Indian cuisine, youll want to know about some tasty pairings to go with your favorite hoppy drink. Everything about the fried delights available on most Indian cuisines, such as pakoras and samosas, are to die for. We cant think of anything finer. Fried dishes and hoppy beers were almost meant for one other, as they were both delicious.
Spiced dishes such as chicken tikka masala and biryani pair nicely with a decent IPA, but be cautious when using hot spices because hops have a harsh, bitter flavor that will only increase the heat of your food!
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Italian Wine For An Easy Indian Feast
Showing the versatility of food-friendly Italian wines, today we share An Italian Wine for an Easy Indian Feast for todays #ItalianFWT visit to Calabria. This post also shows that you can put together a great Indian meal at home in under an hour!
Dont get me wrong, I love Italian food and wine pairings. When Bs basketball game got snowed out last night, giving me a bit more time to cook, I quickly whipped up a nice meat sauce, and served it over rigatoni with a very good Dolcetto from Anna Maria Abbona. Yum!
As much as I enjoy Italian food and wine together, for todays Italian Food, Wine and Travel groups visit to Calabria, Im going to mix it up and share about an Italian Wine for an Easy Indian Feast.
When I asked Ray from Pairings Wine & Food about wines they had available from Calabria, he mentioned the Librandi Ciro Rosso Classico. The first web page I viewed looking more info for this Calabrian wine mentioned pairing it with spicy curry sauces and tandoori chicken. Boom. I know what Id be doing for this #ItalianFWT post!
When we first moved back to the Boston area, with so many great Indian restaurants around, Indian food became one cuisine I was much more likely to eat from a restaurant rather than make at home.
So there you have it, an Easy Indian Feast that we were able to enjoy in the middle of a busy workweek. Of course, any meal referred to as a feast calls for wine!
Sparkling Ros Paired With Chicken Korma
If youre less of a spice enthusiast, then its more than likely that a korma will be your go-to Indian-inspired dish. Included in our menu options available as an Indian takeaway in Milton Keynes, is our very own version of the chicken korma. The Mughlai chicken korma incorporates the rich flavours of the Indo-Persian culture, using an aromatic coconut sauce as the base of the dish. As one of our chefs recommendations, this dish also features the delicate spices of cassia bark and cardamom.
When delving into a chicken korma dish, a sparkling rosé should always be the drink of your choice. As a korma is the creamiest of curries, a wine with a tart fruitiness would be ideal. Unlike other dishes mentioned in our article, the korma always has little spice, which is why you can get away with a sparkling wine with a drier taste.
Traditional korma recipes always include an extensive list of different spices and ingredients however, this shouldnt put you off trialing cooking a korma from home. Korma paste can be picked up in almost all supermarkets, particularly Pataks korma paste jar, which makes it super easy to make your own curry. Other ingredients that you will need are:
- 4 skinless, boneless chicken breasts
- 1 chopped onion
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Pairing French Wine With Indian Appetizers
Champagne is so often perceived as a prestigious drink that it is easy to forget that it is a wine after all. It pairs really well with greasy and salty foods, especially the brut.If you are serving butter garlic prawns or grilled fish or grilled lobster, then your best bet would be the Taittinger Brut . The citrusy and mineral notes of the champagne offset the sweetness of the seafood, refreshing your palate with every sip.If your menu includes chicken tandoori or vegetable cutlets or lamb kebab, then I would suggest Veuve Clicquot Yellow Label Brut . The balance of the fruity notes with the intense vanilla aroma will contrast beautifully with the warmth of the spices.
Pairing French Wine With Flavourful Gravies
If you love your reds, then I would highly recommend you to avoid pairing them with gravies and curries, as tannins leave an unpleasant astringency on your palate.If you are opting for pungent gravies like vegetable kadhi or chicken stew or mustard fish curry, then I would pick Alsace Pinot Blanc. The rounded characteristics of this white wine with its floral tones will enhance your taste buds, without stealing the limelight from your main course.If you are plating creamy gravies like butter chicken or malai kofta or mutton korma, then I would recommend the Alsace Riesling. This dry wine with subtle hints of white fruits and mild spices is an ideal accompaniment to velvety sweet sauces.
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Pairing Wine With Indian Cuisine
Indian cuisine tends to be intensely flavored and heavily spiced. Dishes are usually complemented by an array of curries, chutneys, and sauces, which create an even more complex flavor profile. Since its so complex, Indian cuisine begs for a beverage with simplicity in order to balance out the overall tasting experience. This is the main principle behind pairing wine with Indian cuisine.
Wines with simple, well-defined flavors are able to create balance with complex Indian cuisine.
Here are the considerations to have in mind when selecting a wine:
Compliment The Flavors Of Indian Food With The Right Wine
Mirroring the dish with a spicy style of wine is also a great approach. Gewurztraminer for example is a grape variety that has an attractive spiciness to it and also, conveniently, a natural low acidity . Gewurztraminer wines are being produced in a style were they display some residual sugar. Find the perfect wine to pair and compliment vibrant Indian food flavors.
If the wine of your choice is red, exclude as much oak, acidity and tannins as possible. Pick a light, soft, silky red packed with juicy berries and fruitiness instead. I must emphasize. Do hold the tannins. These really clash with hot food. Go for a Pinot Noir or an aged Tempranillo for example.
If you cant stand light red wines or just really want a red wine with some body and roughness, remember to add fat and salt to the food. This helps the combo a lot and takes the edge of the bitter tannins otherwise enhanced by the hot spice. Also pick a full bodied wine with soft tannins and gentle acidity. A suitable suggestion would be a Primitivo, Zinfandel, US Cabernet Sauvignon or perhaps a flirty Italian Nero dAvola. I have even tried a Australian, soft and juicy Shiraz with Tandoor Lamb marinated in ginger and garlic paste that workt very well.
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Spicy Foods Dont Require Sweet Wine
When matching wine with spicy Indian cuisine, the degree of alcohol in the wine is the most important factor to consider. Low-alcohol wines are essential, Parr explains, noting that high-alcohol wines will make the meal even hotter. Big, bold CaliforniaCabernet Sauvignons are no longer available as a result. Off-dryRieslingsare a fantastic match for this dish, but they are not the only alternative. The residual sugar is essential, but its not that crucial, Parr says of the sugar content.
He also recommends pairing skin-contact orange wines with Indian cuisine.
In the grand scheme of things, Parr adds, imagine fresh, lighter wines.Its not heavy and rich. Chef Jessi Singh, who also runs New York Citys Babu Ji, oversees the kitchen of Bibi Ji, which serves Indian and Indian-influenced cuisine.
What Do You Drink With Indian Chicken Curry
If you like seafood, pick a curry that matches well with a red, like a Pinot Noir or a delicate Shiraz variety. On the other hand, chicken, seafood, and vegetable curries with wines from other grape growing regions go quite well with ripe fruits as well as Pinot Grigio aromas. Continue to make sure to consider spices and sauce.
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Pairing French Wine With Indian Deserts
Indian deserts are intensely sweet. Therefore, it is important to pair them with sweeter wines, otherwise the deserts will render them exceedingly tart.If you are wrapping up your meal with milk-based deserts like gulab jamun or mango kulfi or rice kheer, then go for Muscat de Rivesaltes. The acidity from the citrus notes and the complex aromas from ripe apricot and peaches matches perfectly with creamy deserts.If you are ending your meal with besan barfi or mysore pak or jalebis, then go for the Clairette de Die Tradition. This pale-yellow coloured drink with bouquet of apple, pear, honey scents and floral notes is an ideal companion to these desserts.
Save Your Best Bubbles
Despite the fact that champagne pairs beautifully with Chinese food, fried chicken, and a variety of other rich meals, Parr warns against serving it with Indian cuisine. Champagne is just too complex, he adds of the beverage. It is OK to pair the two, but it will not enhance the Champagne or the dish, according to the expert. Instead, Parr recommends pét nat, also known as pétillant naturel, an old French sparkling wine that is presently enjoying a resurgence in favor. In part because to the fact that it is not disgorged like Champagne and is not always filtered after fermentation, pet nat has a stronger funk than Champagne, which makes it a wonderful fit for the intense flavors of Indian cuisine.
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What White Wine Goes With Indian Food
We have for you an exquisite list to pair your Indian food dishes with some delicious wine!
- Papdi Chaat with a Sparkling Wine.
- Aloo Poori with Sula Chardonnay.
- Paneer Tikka with Sauvignon Blanc.
- Galouti Kebab with Pinot Noir.
- Biryani with a Sangiovese.
- Gulab Jamun with Port Wine.
- Kheer with an Indian Chenin Blanc.
Choosing Wine For Curry Tip : Choose Low Alcohol Wines
Alcohol enhances the impression of heat in food, so if youre going for a fiery curry like vindaloo or madras its best to choose a low-alcohol bottle to reduce the burn. You dont need to worry too much about this rule if youre going for a mild and creamy curry, as theres usually not much heat to begin with. However, if youre heading into the four chilli territory of the menu, its better to minimise the impact by opting for a light-bodied wine. Francone Antichi Poderi dei Gallina 2020 Sparkling Muscat is an excellent choice at just 5% ABV. As well as being low in alcohol, this wine also ticks two other boxes its fizzy, and its sweet so it is potentially the best wine for curry.
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More Indian Food Posts:
- The Most Frequently Used Types of Lentils and Beans in Indian Cooking are: Indian Food 101: Your Complete Guide to Ordering from an Indian Restaurants Menu
- The Complete Guide to Chicken Tikka Masala
- What exactly is Curry? Youve found your all-encompassing Curry Guide. These are the most common Indian spices that you should have on hand in your pantry.
Thai Yellow Curry And Wine
Thai Yellow Curry is the third famous curry variation from Thailand. Like its red and green siblings, Thai Yellow Curry is made from a curry paste, various vegetables and spices, and optionally meat or fish. For the curry paste, chefs use dried Thai chilis, garlic, ginger, shallots, coriander, cilantro, turmeric, and other spices.
Thai chilis are less hot than red or green chilis, making the yellow variation the mildest of all Thai curries. Although its perceivably spicy, it gives the different herbs and spices more room to showcase their aromas.
Like red or green curries, you can combine Thai Yellow Curry and wine that is off-dry to semi-sweet. Pinot Gris or Riesling are great choices. But you can also choose a dry white wine. Make sure it isnt too light otherwise, the meal might overpower it. Go for fruity flavors that you can find in Chardonnay wines from Australia, New Zealand, or California. Stick to unoaked styles. Unoaked Viognier can be a good wine pairing for Thai Yellow Curry, too.
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