See under wine with food.
There is a great deal of literature on the subject of "the right wine for the meal", some of which contains diametrically opposed recommendations. Even professionals such as sommeliers in gourmet restaurants often give quite different recommendations. Can we deduce from this that it doesn't matter which wine is drunk with which dish? In principle, the very simple rule can apply: "What tastes good goes with what tastes good".. But there are indeed a number of dishes that virtually call for a certain type of wine. When enjoying several wines, there are some basic rules. However, the following should at best only be seen as a suggestion, because drinking wine and eating is first and foremost enjoyment through the senses and not a purely "objective" and measurable scientific matter.
Basically, the order is the quality level of the wines, i.e. you start with simple, light (mostly white) wines and increase to the "strongest wine". Long-lived wines should ideally have reached the necessary drinking maturity or, at best, their peak, but this applies in principle to every occasion and not only when choosing the right wine for a meal. One can assume that this is the case in a good restaurant; at home, of course, one must make the right selection oneself. A noble sweet wine - for example a Trockenbeerenauslese - can then be suitable as the final wine. The four basic rules that almost always apply are:
When dining in a restaurant, you can get expert advice and suggestions for the "right wine". An important criterion for deciding whether a restaurant is qualified to do so is the wine list. For only if there is also a larger selection, and not just four or five wines or perhaps at worst only "red wine or white wine" at all, can one assume that drinking culture is cultivated here. The following essay on the subject of "the right wine" comes from Frank Bläuel, former long-time president of the "Club der Sommellerie Österreich" and owner of the "Berghotel Tulbingerkogel" in Mauerbach near Vienna (Austria), who possesses this qualification to the highest degree. The wine list of the house is one of the richest in the country, it has already been awarded the "Best of Award of Excellence" by Wine Spectator magazine 22 times and comprises 1,450 positions.
It also cultivates its own vineyard. The vines were brought here by sommeliers from 30 nations (each with a different grape variety) on the occasion of the Sommelier World Championship in 1998 and planted next to the restaurant terrace on the Tulbingerkogel. From this, a cuvée is pressed every year. Let us now let Frank Bläuel have his say:
Not only the selected dishes influence the harmonising drinks, but also the season, the time of day, the occasion of the meal, the number of people and, of course, the financial willingness to spend. Last but not least, the mood or state of mind should not be underestimated. Everyone has experienced the phenomenon of holiday wine. What was an extraordinary drinking pleasure in the holiday country with the beloved partner in a romantic pub on the beach with soft music with palm trees and sunset and tempted to take a carton of the noble drop with you, now tastes horrible, dull and empty at home.
For the season, imagine a sunny August day, a terrace or a picnic in the countryside; here, a white wine that is as light as possible, with a delicate play of acidity and elegant fruitiness, fits the bill. The opposite scenario is an evening in Advent, where a rather heavy red wine with aromas such as dried berries, eucalyptus and also slight sweetness will suit. At the time of day, the rule almost automatically follows that lighter wines are to be preferred at lunchtime than in the evening. The term "breakfast wine" is used for particularly light, low-alcohol wines, although one does not necessarily enjoy a wine with breakfast. In the past, however, wine soups were popular for breakfast in better circles.
The occasion is an important selection criterion. If you consider Champagne Cuvée de Prestige an everyday drink, what do you celebrate a birthday with? The number of dishes on a menu and the number of people at the table, if wine is not available by the glass, result in reasonable economic quantities of different wines. For two people, you may want to cover the entire menu...
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