BBQ and Wine

By Brianna

It is no mystery that wine is meant to be paired with delicious food. That is why I love pairing my favourite drink with one of my favourite food. BBQ provides ampul of wine pairing opportunities. Caramelized burnt sugar, umami flavours and spicy toppings give us a wide range to work with. Spicy Australian Shiraz, off-dry Riesling, oaked Chardonnay and peppery Cabernet to name a few. A key factor is to pair bold with bold! No matter how crazy the flavours may get.

I decided to showcase six wines from different countries and a wide range of BBQ options to show the classics and diversity for the tasting. Beef brisket, smoked chicken with coleslaw, cornbread and grilled spicy sausage and halloumi cheese. Here are the wines of the evening, starting with the top favourites.

Andreas Bender Annaberg Riesling Kab 2017
Bender combines high quality, a sense of good soils and premium grapes, gentle cellar work, old vineyard crafts and new, modern “wine-thinking.” Aromatic with lush aromas of honey, mango, tropical fruit, citrus, lime with floral, mineral notes and hints of petroleum. Vibrant, and refreshing, residual sugar to balance the acidity, with a long citrus finish. Flavours of pink grapefruit, tart lime, under-ripe mango, lanolin, hints of honey and minerality. A wine of tension and mouth-feel, exhilarating.

Domaine des Aubuisieres Vouvray Brut
The Chenin Blanc of Vouvray brings riper citrus and tree fruit to the bready flavours of Methode Traditionelle and racy, mineral acidity from the Loire Valley soils. With a hint of sweetness, this sparkling wine brings mega flavour and complexity. It may not be the prestigious Champagne however, it is arguably just as beautiful and arguably goes down way easier. Plus this sparkling won’t hurt your pocketbook…..need I say more!!

Best’s Great Western Bin 1 Shiraz
Bin No. 1 Shiraz is softness with spicy overtones and approach-ability. Predominantly produced from grapes grown in their youngest vineyards, this Shiraz is a mix of dense dark cherries and forest fruits. Texturally a delight. Great with a fillet of beef, rack of lamb, black peppercorn sauce. This Shiraz brings beautiful velvety tannins and complex savoury notes.

Merayo Sangria
I chose this wine because what is better for dessert than more wine! Merayo Sangria is a delight on many different levels. The lively acidity accompanied with fresh orange peel will delight your stimulated taste buds after all that BBQ eats. This Sangria is a special production originally made just for friends. We are one of the only places in the world outside of the winery itself where you can get it. With this amazing wine you don’t have to worry about mixing, adding fruit or doing anything else other than cracking a bottle and trying to make sure you don’t drink it too fast, because it is that delicious! The term ‘dangerously drinkable’ was possibly originally created to describe this wine.

Ferdinand Poco Tinto
Evan Frazier created this masterpiece. This lightly macerated Graciano makes for an absolutely sippable adult version of cranberry juice and fresh bing cherry tarts, chill for best results! The grapes are all Graciano from Vista Luna vineyard. Reddish-pink in appearance, with fresh carbonic aromas of red fruits and roses and a really crunchy palate. No SO2 added – this is like drinking straight from the barrel. A lot of fun, this is the perfect springtime wine.

Durigutti Compuertas Cordisco
Originally planted as an experimental plot within the vineyard, the first wines were made from this varietal originating from Abruzzo (Italy). The wine was fermented in concrete eggs with native yeasts. This is a fresh wine, soft red colour, which plays very well between floral and fruity. The aromas of red cherry, roses and fresh herbs, among which thyme and tarragon stand out, are amalgamated in an explosion of typical aromas of carbonic maceration. The palate is dry, with lively acidity and pleasant tannins. Meant to be drunk young and slightly chilled. Is this a heavy rose or a light red?

Due to BBQ’s vast meat and sauce selections, tannins should be your main guide in picking a wine. Depending on how delicate the meat is the wine can hide the beauty with its high tannin, that is why medium/medium + wine can be a hidden gem in these cases. Now the sauce is like the icing on the cake. It coats the food with a little love and makes your taste buds go KA-BOOM! It, however, can make things go wonky sometimes. The most important thing to remember is high tannin = fuelling the fire or high acidity (without sugar balance) = fuelling the fire. That is why medium/medium +, or even off-dry wines can help with spicy options. There are always exceptions to the rule and I have highlighted the main mistakes with wine pairing. So, to keep it simple I have provided some examples to further inspire and guide your next BBQ feast.

Beef – Spice is your friend; Shiraz, Cabernet Sauvignon, Tempranillo, Bordeaux, Super Tuscan, Carmenere, Grenache
Pork- Pinot Noir, Zinfandel, Chilled Port, Riesling, Gamay
Chicken- Cabernet Franc, Zinfandel, Gamay, Chenin Blanc, Pinot Noir, Nebbiolo
Seafood- Beaujolais Chardonnay, Sauvignon Blanc, Chenin Blanc, Riesling, Gewurztraminer

I’d like to thank Holy Smokes and Peasant Cheese for the delicious food pairings. I’d especially like to thank all of the wonderful people that have decided to expand their palates that evening. If anyone has any questions regarding food/wine pairing please call or email us at Kensington Wine Market!

- Brianna Horncastle


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