Wine and Seafood

by | Mar 13, 2023 | 0 comments

Wine and seafood are a match made in heaven and there is no better place to experience this than on Skye and especially the Waternish Peninsular. The delicate flavours of seafood can be enhanced and complemented by the right wine pairing. Here are some tips from the Wine Guy on Skye on how to pair wine and seafood to ensure the best experience.

When it comes to pairing wine and seafood, there are some general rules to follow. First, always match the wine to the flavour intensity of the seafood. Lighter seafood dishes should be paired with lighter wines, while richer and more complex seafood dishes can handle fuller-bodied wines.  Another rule of thumb is to match the acidity of the wine to the acidity of the dish. For example, if you are serving a seafood dish with a lemon or vinegar-based sauce, choose a wine with higher acidity to balance the flavours.

White wine is often the go-to wine for seafood, and for good reason. The light, crisp and refreshing nature of white wine works perfectly with the delicate flavours of seafood. A dry white wine, such as a Sauvignon Blanc, is a great choice to pair with grilled or pan-seared fish. The acidity in the wine will help cut through the richness of the fish, while the citrus zingy notes will bring out the flavour of the fish.  Our de la Vigne Sauvignon Blanc from Hawkes Bay, New Zealand has strong citrus and an undertone of minerality that is ideal for seafood, especially prawns and langoustines. 

Oysters, mussels and clams have flavours that pair really well with crisp white wines such as Chablis or unoaked Chardonnays, especially from France.  Our unoaked Chardonnay from the Beaujolais region of France has those classic crisp flavours but also a balanced body so that it compliments rather than overpowers the salinity.  

Sometimes you need a more fuller-bodied white wine and people tend to go for oaked Chardonnay as that time in oak provides more buttery, yeasty and honey notes.  These work especially well with creamy sauces and more meaty fish and seafood like monkfish and lobster.  Some find heavy oak though too overpowering and so try our de la Terre ‘Gracie’ as the middle ground.  Created in Hawkes Bay, New Zealand and named after the producer’s dog, it is a clever blend of Chardonnay and Viognier providing body but also aromatic flavours; the Viognier also offers a little smokiness to make it as good for barbequed fish as it does merely as a sundowner glass!  

Red wine is often overlooked when it comes to pairing with seafood, but there are some red wines that can work well. Lighter red wines, such as Pinot Noir, can be paired with tuna or salmon. The lighter tannins in the wine won’t overpower the delicate flavours of the fish.  Pinot Noir grapes is notoriously difficult to grow but there are a number of producers in the UK who now are challenging for top spot.  Brightwell Vineyard on the banks of the Thames in Oxfordshire has produced an excellent example of this wine that is ideal for fish dishes, whether chilled or at room temperature.

In conclusion, wine and seafood are a perfect match. Whether you prefer white, red or sparkling wine, there is a wine out there that can complement the delicate flavours of seafood. Follow these tips and experiment with different wine and seafood pairings to find your perfect match.  And of course Wine Guy on Skye is here to help you through your pairing journey.