The Top 12 Wines To Pair With Shellfish
Whether youre hosting a tasting party or simply enjoying a meal at home, no culinary experience is complete without the proper food and wine pairings.
From proteins to veggies, the opportunity to create mouthwatering matches is truly endless, but with the summer season in full swing, its only right that we dive into the world of shellfish!
Shellfish are traditionally paired with light whites and sparkling wines, but with so many delicious options in our Wine Department, how do you choose? Eliminate the guess work and check out our hand-curated list of 12 wines that pair perfectly with any of the fresh, globally responsible shellfish from our Seafood Department.
From oysters and clams to mussels, shrimp and scallops, this list is your ticket to an incredible tasting adventure!
1. Chateau La Freynelle Bordeaux Blanc A blend of Sauvignon, Muscadelle and Semillon, this intensely aromatic and rich wine carries notes of lemons, grapefruit, peaches and honeysuckle.
2. Domaine des Quatre Routes Muscadet Sevre-et-Maine, Sur LieMade entirely from the Melon de Bourgogne grape, this French selection is delicate and crisp with balanced notes of citrus and pear.
3. Domaine Paul Thomas Sancerre Les ComtessesCreamy in texture and driven by flavors of jasmine and almond, this French Sauvignon Blanc is complemented by bright undertones of apple and grapefruit.
Book A Reservation At Summer Shack
Now that weve got your tastebuds excited and youre ready to try some of these pairings, come join us at Summer Shack! We have a wide selection of tasty seafood dishes and wines to choose from. As the best seafood restaurant in Boston, you cant go wrong! We pride ourselves on using only the freshest seafood and best preparation methods to ensure every plate that gets served to a customer will be the best seafood theyve ever had. Our wait staff can offer an array of wine suggestions to pair with any seafood you order while still fitting your personal flavor preferences. Contact Summer Shack today to make your reservation at our Boston, Cambridge, or Mohegan Sun location!
Best Wine To Pair With Seafood
One of lifes greatest pleasures is a warm summer evening with your friends, enjoying some superb food and your favourite glass of wine. Many people find the world of wine a minefield, but it is simple once you know the basics. Trust us you dont need to be a sommelier at a top 5-star hotel to know your stuff. Excellent seafood and wine pairing are just divine. With Seafood, most of us know to think dry, crisp, and bubbly, although red wine certainly has its place, and wine lovers should feel confident pairing red wine with fish.
A Little Bit Of The Bubbly
When you want to pull out all the stops, the first place to start looking is delicious champagne. Champagne and Caviar have long been considered a classic pairing, so compliment with some poppin Salmon Roe Caviar. The solid briny flavours will bring out all of those iconic notes in your favourite champers. Although champagne may be deemed superior, dont be in such a hurry to disregard a Prosecco or even Cava. In whatever its form, Sparkling Wine is spot-on perfect for fried food. Our Salt & Pepper squid with a complimentary bubbly will just cut through the weight of the fried batter. Its just *chefs kiss*
The Classic White
TOP SEAFOOD BY SYKES TIP: When in doubt and youre stuck on a choice, a New Zealand Sauvignon Blanc is versatile enough to go with pretty much anything.
The Pink One Rosé
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Pairing Wine With Salmon
Pinot Noir is a great choice for pairing salmon with a wine that brings out its natural flavors and blends delightfully into a gastronomical feast for your taste buds. The dark color alone distinguishes this wine from other salmon-friendly wines. Sauvignon Blanc also has a high level of acidity in its flavor and aroma, which pairs well with fishs fat content. Chardonnay is another wonderful option. This wines rustic flavor complements a buttery salmon meal with rich flavors from sauces or gravies.
Pairing Wine With Seafood
Seafood is generally quite healthy, with the National Health Service recommending we have two portions of seafood per week. Pairing a beautifully-seasoned fish fillet or a decadent plate of shellfish with a glass of wine is a wonderful thing, although its not a one bottle fits all solution. Check out our handy breakdown on wine and seafood pairings below for a steer in the right direction.
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Chardonnay Fum Blanc Viognier Pinot Gris
This is the realm of the fuller whites. Oaky Chardonnay gets a bad rap these days, but it’s great with striped bass, crab, raw oysters, even lobster. The theory here is to match a full-bodied wine with a full-bodied dish. If you have a broth-based soup, chardonnay works wonderfully. If you have a fish that’s a little oilier, such as bluefish or mackerel, try pinot gris or viognier, or an Italian grillo.
Wine And Seafood Pairing Perfect Matching
People tend jump to the generalisation that any white wine is a good match with seafood, but there are of course many different varieties of white, some better suited to certain dishes than others moreover, there are many instances when sparkling or even red wine make for the best matching with seafood.
From raw oysters to meaty fillets of fish and rich stews, seafood runs the gamut in terms of flavour profile, so you wine pairings will range widely, too. Below, Ive broken seafood into a few different categories, each of which calls for a different expression of wine to go with it.
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Red Wine That Goes With Seafood
If your seafood is without sauce, then its likely that the best wines for it will be a full-bodied white, such as a Chardonnay , a Viognier, or a Muscat. This is because seafood has a relatively thick and very buttery texture and flavor that a full-bodied white will complement perfectly.
Alternatively, if you prefer a bottle of red wine, then light-bodied reds, such as Pinot Noir or Zinfandel that have been slightly chilled are the best match for seafood. If you go too full-bodied then you are likely to completely overpower the seafood as well as poorly complimenting the wine- which is unfortunate for both the dish and the drink.
Crab & Lobster Wine Pairing
With its delicate flavours and soft white meat, lobster and crab need a light, fresh wine companion. Think about how good fresh lobster tastes with just a squeeze of lemon over the top? You want a light, crisp wine with a touch of acidity to act as the lemon wedge to your lobster or crab dish.
How are you cooking your lobster? As with all delicate seafood dishes, finding the right wine depends on the overall flavours of the meal.
Cooking buttered lobster in the shell, smothered in garlic butter, with a buttered bruschetta? A big buttery Chardonnay like this varietal from Te Pa Chardonnay will add texture as well as richness to your meal.
Lobster in a light sauce, or straight from the shell with seasoning that heroes the flavours of the seafood deserves a light, slightly crisp wine to add balance and a touch of acidity. Sauvignon Blanc is a good choice: try these delicious varieties from Squawking Magpie Reserve or Two Rivers Convergence.
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Sizzlefish Seafood Pairs Well With Whatever You Like
A fine wine can enhance a meal, but the meal itself depends on the quality of its ingredients. Sizzlefish supplies first-quality seafood that pairs well with whatever you choose to serve: beer, wine, iced tea, water.
The table below offers wine pairing selections for types of seafood and style of preparation.
Seafood And Wine Pairing
Here at The Cornish Fishmonger, were pleased to offer a selection of recipes to complement the many species of fresh Cornish fish that we provide. Often customers ask us for wine pairing recommendations, so we thought we’d put together a few of our favourite seafood and wine combinations, and put them on here for you all to see.
In general, we find that fish pairs well with white wine, however some species will partner well with lighter chilled reds, as well as Champagne and dry Sherry. As a rule, the lighter the dish the lighter the wine, with more robust flavours requiring a heavier wine. However, personal taste is everything, so well leave the choice of price and country of origin to you enjoy!
Oysters: Champagne is the ideal candidate for a true taste of the sea, or try Manzanilla Sherry as an alternative.
Prawns: How you cook your prawns will influence your choice of wine. However, a dry Manzanilla Sherry, Sauvignon Blanc or any dry white will normally taste delicious.
Bass: This classic fish deserves the best wine. Aged white Burgundy or full flavoured Chardonnay work well, and be sure to push the boat out to buy the best you can afford.
Salmon: Due to salmons powerful flavour, you will need a stronger white Loire – perhaps Sancerre, Pouille Fume or even a light red pinot noir slightly chilled.
Scallops: While they are similar to Crab in many ways, Scallops have a much subtler flavour. Enjoy with a Pinot Gris, Chardonnay or Viognier.
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Moscato And Spicy Fish
Low in alcohol, sweet and a tiny bit fizzy, Moscato wine is filled with aromas like vanilla, peach, jasmine and caramel. While some hosts offer the Moscato as more of a dessert wine, it can also be served with the main course. To balance its sweet, mild flavor, try pairing Moscato with a Mexican dish, such as spicy fish tacos. The typical fish for spicy tacos is going to be a mild white fish like tilapia, sole or snapper. After savoring the tangy taco, a sip of Moscato helps bring in enjoyable flavors like peach and creamy pear. The sharpness of the wine helps control the spice a bit if it gets overwhelming.
Bluefishes And Their Delicateness
The bluefish category includes some of the most popular fishes used for different cuisine styles, like sardine and cuttlefishes, creating simple yet flavorful dishes. These fishes are often fried or used as a sauce for pasta and soups. They dont have high-fat content and they have a pretty simple taste, so they represent the perfect traditional match with an high acidity and fresh white wine. In fact, the acidity balances the aroma of the bluefish and it lengthen its finish on the aftertaste. Moreover, high acidity white wine often goes well with the cooking techniques used for bluefish, especially with frying. Think about a delicate bluefish tempura paired with a fresh white wine from the Western part of Loire Valley made from Melon de Bourgogne, with high acidity and refreshing lemongrass and grapefruit notes, like The Wine For Seafood by PairMe.
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Red Or White Wine With Fish
Fish is such a broad category of food, containing a wide variety of textures and flavours. Trying to choose just one to cover all seafood dishes simply wont do justice to either the fish or the wine.
The better questions to ask are, Which wine will pair best with this fish? or I love this bottle of wine, what kind of fish should I put on the menu?
Once you know which types of fish you enjoy, and understand the flavours they bring to a dish, you can start experimenting with different wine varietals until you find a perfect match.
Roussanne & Mixed Paella Pairing
An Oaked Aged Roussanne from the Rhone Valley of France is a full-bodied white wine with flavours of herbs, honey, minerals, melons, pears and peaches. The minerality of Roussanne complements the iodine flavours of the seafood, while the creamy texture of the white wine complements the silkiness of the saffron-flavoured rice. Meanwhile, you get a refreshing contrast with the notes of apricot, apple, pear, peach and orange of Roussanne.
Because it is full-bodied, Roussanne has no issue holding up to the stronger flavours of duck or rabbit, provided you have plenty of seafood tossed into your Paella to cut down on the savoury factor.
Roussanne might be difficult for you to find as often what is imported into North America is blended with other grapes to create a white Châteauneuf-du-Pape, Hermitage Blanc or Saint Joseph. The French labelling can make finding Roussanne a touch difficult, however, look for bottles by Yves Cuilleron, Jaboulet, Jean Luc Colombo and Château de Beaucastel for quality Roussanne. In past 25 years several producers in California, Washington and Australia have been creating delicious Roussanne that might be easier to find. I particularly enjoy dArenberg Roussanne out of Australia and Bonny Doon, Rubicon, Tablas Creek and Zaca Mesa out of California.
If you want a want to stick to white wines you are familiar with, a moderately oaked Chardonnay will pair up nice with Paella due to the wines creamy body and rich vanilla flavours.
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Pairing Wine With Fish
There are so many different types of fish, it is almost impossible to give a recommendation that works for all fish. In general, if you arent sure it is typically best to pair with a off-dry riesling. But the type of fish and how it is prepared will determine which wine will enhance your meal the most.
Chardonnay Chenin Blanc Merlot Cabernet Sauvignon
You can enjoy your chicken with either a red or white wine depending on your preference as well as how you prepared your chicken. If you prepared your chicken in a light, creamy sauce youre going to want to go with a white wine such as a versatile Chardonnay, Chenin Blanc, or Pinot Gris.You can also pair these white wines with chicken that is prepared with light seasoning or slightly spicy chicken dishes. If you are going to go with a spicy chicken dish or spicy asian chicken dish, we suggest pairing with a Riesling because of the great fruit-forward flavor.
For chicken that is prepared with a tomato or Pepper-based sauce, we recommend going with a red wine. A good Merlot would work great here but if you prefer a Cabernet Sauvignon we say go for it instead. Also if youre roasting a chicken, you may look to pair it with a red wine such as a Merlot or Cabernet Sauvignon. If you prefer a white wine however, we suggest pairing a roasted chicken with Chardonnay.
Chicken wine pairing is similar to seafood in the way that the perfect pairing really comes down to how the dish is prepared, how much and what seasoning to use, isfthe sauce a light, white sauce or if it is a red sauce, etc.
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Best Wine To Pair With Sea Bass
Sea bass may seem like it falls into the category of meaty fish alongside tuna and salmon, but its mild flavoring keeps it out of the club. The best kind of wine to pair it with is a lively white with lots of flavors like a Sauvignon Blanc or a Pinot Grigio. This will allow your palette to experience lots more flavors than it would with just the fish, and prevent the dish from falling flat.
Meaty Fish House Rules
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Duck & Sausage Gumbo & Zinfandel Pairing
A medium-ranged Zinfandel has the perfect amount of fruitiness and smoky spiciness to complement the sausage in your Gumbo. Expect notes of black pepper, coffee, cloves, smoke and cinnamon to dance with all the rich flavours drifting around in your gumbo. Meanwhile, the fruity flavours of blackberries, black cherries and raspberries help mask the gaminess of the duck.
Middle and lower ranged Zinfandel tend to be low in tannin, making them acidic enough to go with a Creole Gumbo containing Tomatoes, or an ever so spicy Cajun Gumbo.
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Red Or White Wine With Seafood
Seafood dishes are usually best pairing with white wine. This is because white wine is a light and refreshing drink that will not overpower the flavors of the seafood.
White wines are perfect for seafood dishes! Sauvignon blanc, chardonnay, and pinot grigio are some of the most popular white wines that go with seafood.
Although full-bodied reds should be avoided, when we talk about accompanying seafood cuisine, dont rule out a young red or a refreshing rosé.
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How To Pair Wine With Hot Seafood And Fish
Whether youre serving up whole-baked snapper, lobster mornay or a grilled seafood platter, these recipes and wine suggestions will bring out the best in hot seafood.
Summer is a wonderful time for seafood and this versatile protein lends itself beautifully to cooking and entertaining al fresco. Recipes that feature hot seafood and fish always make for a memorable lunch or dinner especially when paired with the right wine. Most critics agree the citrus, tropical and stonefruit flavours of white and sparkling wine are always best, but dishes that feature bold, spicy sauces and accompaniments can go well with a glass of red. Try these ideas
3. Tuna cassoulet Another dish best served with a classic white, this version of a French cassoulet sees tender tuna fillets baked in the rich flavours of tomato, leek and Dijon mustard. Served in individual ramekins, its perfect for dinner parties or a special family meal.
GRILLED1. While squid is normally always best served with white wine, this recipe offsets its tender flavour with chipolata sausages, spicy tomato relish and a peppery rocket salad rich, hearty flavours that can all stand up to the dense and juicy palate of the award-winning Houghton Red Classic. A dry rosé or light pinot noir are also good choices.
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