You may think you know enough about reds and whites, but do know which particular wine is the best choice when it comes to pairing with spicy food? There aren’t really any hard and fast rules, and we’re not talking about forgoing your favorite flavor, but there are some tips that you can certainly take advantage of to get the most out of both your food and your wine.
To begin with, consider a sweet wine. It works well with spicy foods because it helps balance out the two competing flavors. It may also help to numb out your tongue with a little sweet to counteract all the heat. A light, fruity wine is also a good bet because this type of wine typically contains fewer tannins. A high tannin wine may dilute all the flavor of your spicy food. You may also want to avoid an oaky wine, for it can also sometimes dominate the flavor of your food. As for tips on which particular wine to choose, try a wine with lower alcohol content. This allows you to sip more wine as you eat, washing away some of the heat. A lower alcohol count can also help ease the spicy food burn.
In addition, try to match the spicy, hot food with a wine flavor, if possible. Chianti or Rioja work well with morita peppers while a smoky cabernet may be a good choice for a similarly smoky, chipotle-flavored meal. Another option is to choose a Cabernet, flavored with currants or dried cranberries, and pair it with ancho chiles. Overall, some of the best wines to try out include Pinot Gris, Riesling, Shiraz, Moscato and Zinfandel, among others. No matter which wine you desire, make sure you’re getting the most out of your drink and your favorite spicy dish!