Oh me, oh my, oh! It’s Cinco de Vino! Okay, so it’s really Cinco de Mayo, but come on! Loving all things wine, what else are we gonna’ talk about?
Mexican food with wine, you say? If you’ve never ventured into pairing wine with your favorite Mexican food, trust us. It’s as fun as it is easy!
Let’s start with a little hint: alcohol intensifies the heat of chiles, and chiles intensify the alcohol, so choosing lower alcohol wines is the first step. The second step is to choose those that are crisp with acidity. They’re best suited to complement the complex flavors and spices of great Mexican cuisine. And thirdly, always pair the wine with the sauce, not the protein. i.e., consider the ingredients in your dishes. In general, red wines will work best with earthy chipotle, pasilla or adobo chile sauces – or if it’s all about that cheese! White wines will work better with lime, citrus, tomatillo and cilantro or herbal sauces. Cinchy, huh?
Some particularly good white varietals to consider might include Sauvignon Blanc, Pinot Grigio, an Albarino – or even a dry Riesling.
Red wine lovers should try Tempranillo, Sangiovese or Malbec, a luscious Zinfandel or even a supple Syrah.
But, like we always say, wine guidelines and suggested pairings are just that – suggestions. The right wine for you is the one you like best! We just recommend that if you’re entertaining, play it safe and have a couple of different options available.
There’s a Temecula Valley wine out there that will make your Mexican fiesta excelente and take your meal from tasty to sabroso!
Some Temecula Valley white wines to try:
Hart Winery “Two Vineyard Blend” Sauvignon Blanc
Cougar Winery 100% Pinot Grigio
Baily Winery dry Riesling
or Danza del Sol “Sabroso”, a Late Harvest Sauvignon Blanc – perfect for dessert!
If you prefer reds, try:
Longshadow Ranch Estate Tempranillo
Frangipani Winery’s Estate Sangiovese
one of Doffo Winery’s many Malbecs
Lorenzi Winery “Zin City” Zinfandel
Falkner Winery “Rock Creek” Syrah