Perhaps not surprisingly, crisp, unoaked whites are the perfect place to start! But they’re not the only place. Sparkling wines and some lighter-bodied reds also work well with a wide range of seafood.
Freshly Shucked Oysters
There aren’t many food and wine combinations better than freshly shucked oysters and crisp, unoaked white wine. Whether it’s Hunter Valley Semillon, Marlborough Sauvignon Blanc, Margaret River Sem Sav Blanc, Italian Pinot Grigio or Clare Valley Riesling, the combination of the two is out of this world.
Champagne or sparkling wine is another great match – the yeasty, autolysis characters combine beautifully with the creamy flavours of the oyster. Unoaked whites also work well with white-fleshed fish. Neither dominates, which allows the delicate flavours of each to shine.
Chardonnay and Pinot Gris for richer seafood
Seafood that’s higher in oil like salmon, tuna and ocean trout needs a white wine that’s richer in flavour. Chardonnay and Pinot Gris are perfect, as they have the requisite weight and power to withstand the stronger flavours of these types of fish.
What about a light-bodied red wine?
Sure! Pinot Noir pairs perfectly with grilled salmon and ocean trout. The berry and spice flavours add another dimension to the flavours of the fish. But there’s nothing stopping you from experimenting with other combinations – cool climate Shiraz and Rosé are two other wines that will match these flavours superbly.
Garlic prawns and …
Just about any white wine you like! Marsanne, Verdelho, Arneis, Moscato … the options are endless. You could even try Sparkling Shiraz! Just remember to think of the synergy between the weight and texture of the food and the weight and texture of the wine. Whether it’s white wine or red wine is entirely up to you!