There are many many books, blogs, and articles written every year about matching wine with food. There have been a handful of scientific studies on the matter as well (See Hildegarde Heyman’s study from UC Davis a few years back debunking wine and cheese pairings).
That said, I have rarely had ‘epiphany’ moments when matching wines with specific foods. Sure, I’ve had some great steaks with cabs, and some wonderful fish dishes with pinots . . . and even a few wonderful pasta with white sauce dishes with mineral and acid driven Chablis. But these are exceptions, not rules, in my experiences . . .
I had a great experience a few weeks back while pouring at the Malibu Wine Classic, though. I was pouring my wine next to a station that was serving a Hamachi Sashimi with a touch of avocado and a splash of a spicy green sauce. On a hunch, I went over and got a piece and tried it with my 2008 The Outlier, a dry Gewurztaminer with about .25% residual sugar . . and VOILA! The ever-so-slight sweetness on the finish of the wine tamed the slight spiciness of the dish; the fullness of the wine blended perfectly with the mildish flavors of the Hamachi. I recommended the pairing to dozens of people that day, and in every case, they came back with big smiles on their faces! A true success!
What magical pairings have you experienced recently? I’d love to hear about them – and have you share them with others!!!!!!!