food

The 7 most surprising food and wine matches everyone should try.

Seppelt
Thanks to our brand partner, Seppelt

When cooking up a storm and pondering wine choices, it's easy to fall into a rut.

If you're serving up pasta, you reach for a red. If chicken is on the menu, you pour out a glass of white.

But according to the experts, food and wine rules are there to be broken, all in the name of enhancing our dining experiences.

Adam Carnaby, winemaker from one of Australia's most acclaimed wineries, Seppelt in Victoria's Grampians region, told Mamamia the trick to a perfect meal is knowing exactly how the flavours in your chosen dish are going to enhance your wine and vice versa.

"It's not so much that selecting the wrong wine detracts from your dining experience, but more that the experience may not live up to its full potential," he told Mamamia.

"Wines are crafted to be enjoyed, no matter the occasion – however you'd be hard pressed to beat pairing a beautiful Australian sparkling wine as an aperitif, or enjoying a full-bodied Shiraz with an evening meal."

The options are endless, but to ensure you're getting the most from your wines, it's always worth taking the occasion, company and food pairing into consideration.

We asked Adam to help us with some food and wine pairings, inspired by the new Seppelt Luxury Collection, to spice up your next special dining event.

1.  Eating risotto? Try 2018 St Peters Grampians Shiraz.

The best comfort food: Mushroom risotto. Image: Getty.

Adam Carnaby: St Peters showcases the distinctive style and pedigree of Grampians Shiraz. Sourced from the most intense fruit from the best blocks of our Great Western Vineyard, St Peters is a powerful wine yet full of finesse - perfect to mark a special occasion or important milestone over dinner.

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You'll need to match this wine with a dish that has a savouriness to it and a beautiful rich mushroom risotto ticks all the right boxes.

2. Feel like curry? Pair it with a 2020 Drumborg Vineyard Henty Riesling.

Adam Carnaby: This wine displays amazing fruit purity, structure and intensity of flavour. It's a wine that you might often consider just enjoying on its own, but it's also the perfect surprise accompaniment to a spicy lunch.

This particular Riesling will be well received at either a casual catch-up or a more formal celebration as it has an approachable style that will win over people not normally partial to Riesling.

To mix up your next lunch party, pair it with spicy Thai green curry with chicken as the Riesling will perfectly cut through the heat







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For special occasions Seppelt Winemaker Adam Carnaby recommends 2018 St Peters Grampians Shiraz, a 2019 Drumborg Vineyard Henty Pinot Meunier or a 2020 Drumborg Vineyard Henty Riesling from the Seppelt Wines' Luxury Collection. Image: Seppelt Wines. 


3. Middle Eastern mezza? Go for a 2019 Drumborg Vineyard Henty Pinot Meunier.

Adam Carnaby: Pinot Meunier is an interesting dry table wine reminiscent of Pinot Noir. It's the perfect companion to lunch or dinner as it goes well with a wide range of foods and is light to medium-bodied.

A 2019 Drumborg Vineyard Henty Pinot Meunier is best paired with a selection of Middle Eastern-style dishes such as falafel with hummus and Turkish bread.

It's also a wine that will add a sense of occasion to your next celebration. This is a unique example of this variety of wine and amongst only a handful of wines made in this fashion in Australia. 

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Given Pinot Meunier is a style still being discovered by many, it certainly makes for a great conversation starter and often takes people by surprise for its enduring appeal.

4. Crispy skin duck for dinner? Try the 2008 Show Sparkling Shiraz.

Adam Carnaby: If you're looking for a beverage to add a flair of celebration to an event such as a milestone birthday or Christmas lunch, look no further than a sparkling Shiraz.

Despite having a lengthy pedigree, people are often taken aback by the concept of sparkling red. However, once you try it you'll see why so many people become long-term fans.

The Show Sparkling Shiraz is produced using the traditional method of sparkling production and this wine has had nine years aging in the bottle before release, which produces a complex wine with aged red characters and interesting forest floor notes.

For the ultimate celebration, pair it with well-flavoured crispy skin duck. 

“To ensure you’re getting the most from your wines it’s always worth taking the occasion, company and food pairing into consideration,” said Seppelt Winemaker Adam Carnaby. 

5. Charcuterie? Pair it with a 2013 Salinger Henty Vintage Pinot Noir Chardonnay.

Adam Carnaby: It's not that unexpected, but this wine serves brilliantly alongside an antipasto or charcuterie platter.

This wine is crafted utilising Pinot Noir, Chardonnay and Pinot Meunier fruit, creating an elegant Australian sparkling which has become a fan favourite.

(Side note from Mamamia: Spice up your regular charcuterie platter by adding fruits such as mango, dragonfruit, rambutan and papaya to your normal salami, prosciutto and cheese spread!)

6. Veggie parmigiana? Have a 2017 Chalambar Grampians and Heathcote Shiraz.

Eggplant parmigiana. DROOL. Image: Getty

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Adam Carnaby: Shiraz is a classic Australian wine choice and this particular drop features savoury spice aromas with a medium-bodied palate abundant with mulberry fruits, complex spice flavours, and velvety tannins.

A good Shiraz is usually perfectly suited to a dinner setting but to mix it up, you could serve a Chalambar Grampians and Heathcote Shiraz at lunch because it’s a medium-bodied wine.

For a delicious and unexpected lunch treat, serve a glass of Shiraz alongside an eggplant parmigiana with polenta.

7. Pork crackling? Complement with a 2018 Jaluka Henty Chardonnay.

Adam Carnaby: Here's a trick that will always serve you well when whipping up a feast. When you're serving up rich foods, always pair the meal with a bottle of Chardonnay.

If you're looking for inspiration, the 2018 Jaluka Chardonnay features lively citrus and stone fruit characters with a creamy texture, all balanced by well-integrated French oak to produce a complex, refined Chardonnay.

Chardonnay is very much back in style because it pairs so well with such a large variety of foods.

Try teaming it alongside pork with crispy crackling, so the citrus and fruit characters can complement the rich flavour. 

If you're looking to try out these delicious pairings, the 2019 Seppelt Luxury Collection is available from select retailers nationwide and online at www.seppelt.com.au.

What are your favourite food and wine pairings?

Feature image: Getty.

Seppelt
Founded in 1851, Seppelt is one of Australia’s most historic wine producers. Few Australian wineries have carved such a distinguished name for both still and sparkling wines. Not only a pioneer of sparkling wine in Australia in the 1890s – of both white and red expressions - Seppelt also crafts some of the country’s most collected table wines and helped pave the way for cool climate styles in Australia.
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