Grilled BBQ and Wine Pairing

Grill For some people, grilled and BBQed food is the best tasting food possible. I've seen people grill in New England in January, huddled in the snow while the ribs slow-cooked on the porch. When you've got the perfect food ready to eat, there are many wines which can make the meal even that more pleasurable.

My personal favorite for grilled food has got to be Rioja. This is a medium-weight red wine that's spicy and fruity. Classic, bold, these wines taste mostly of their tempranillo roots and have a bright, fresh flavor to them. This goes extremely well with steak and other hearty meats.

Serve red Riojas at around 61-64°F. If it's hot out, you might want to stick the bottle in the fridge for a few minutes. If you serve a red wine too warm, it tastes mostly of alcohol and you lose the great flavors.

Another great wine with ribs and thick steaks is Baco Noir. What a red! None of this namby-pamby light stuff. This wine has heft to it - very complex flavors, with wood, spice, richness, texture. Definitely a long finish, something that can go with a rich BBQ ribs dish.

Best of all, with a Baco Noir there's the infamous Purple Mouth that results. You can offer this wine to unsuspecting friends and see if they notice each others tongues. Probably not, they'll be enraptured by the wine's flavor.

Are you more of a white wine person? If you're grilling up fresh seafood and serving salads, try for a Chablis - a Chardonnay made in the Chablis region of France. You're not doing this because you're anti-Californian! You're doing this because while in California Chardonnays tend to be very warm, oaky, and smooth, the Chablis version of Chardonnay is flinty, steely, fruity, and crisp. This is the perfect accompaniment to oysters, seafood, and light poultry.

Sangria Do you have some visitors who aren't really wine drinkers? Sangria is the answer! This fresh, fruity punch is made by dumping red wine, brandy, fruits, ice, and cinnamon together and letting it sit overnight. We have tons of recipes on line to help you mix the perfect batch.

Here's a toast to hoping your BBQ is on a sunny day!

Wine Food Pairings by Food Type
Wine Food Pairings