Château Chambert Cahors-Malbec wine

Château Chambert Cahors Malbec Wine & French Food

Friday, November 5, 2010 – The Château Chambert Cahors Malbec Wine by  

Chateau de Chambert

We are entering the season of business dinners, company parties and holiday dinners. Does the thought of selecting wines for your next party make you feel nervous? You are not alone. Many people find choosing the right wine pairing a stressful task, but it doesn’t have to be. Think of wine as part of the recipe for a great meal, not an independent beverage.

When selecting the right wine for a given dish keep in mind that it should taste as good or better with the food, as it does alone. The following guidelines help narrow your choices and create stress-free pairings.

 Match “like weights”

Specifically, match the weight of the wine with the weight of the food—light fare with lighter bodied, more delicate wines and fuller bodied wines with bigger foods. This is one of the food and wine concepts that is most intuitive. Most of us wouldn’t think to order a light, fruity Malbec with a fillet mignon. Conversely, a glass of hearty Cahors-Malbec rose go well with a delicate seafood salad.

Pairing strategy—contrast or complement?

We have all heard the sayings "opposites attract," or the converse, "complementary partners make the best matches." Sound like relationship advice? Well it is, but these rules also create successful food and wine pairings. Contrasting uses diverse flavors to enhance the differences; whereas complementary matches flavors to enhance the similarities. Think of a seafood dish in a creamy sauce. You could complement it with a rich, mellow white like Malbec or contrast it with a crisper white like Jurançon.                  

Salt needs Acid

Acid in wine is that tangy or sour sensation you get on your tongue. That pucker factor is found in crisp wines like Malbec, Riesling and Grüner Veltliner to name a few. Salty foods neutralize or soften acidity in a wine and need to be paired with higher acid wines.  Most meals should have at least moderate acidity. If the dish is particularly salty or briny (e.g., oysters, crabs, pickled items), look for crisp or high acid wines. 

Fats Soften Tannins

Tannins are naturally astringent substances found in grape skins, as well as other foods like walnuts. Tannins are perceived in our mouths as a sense of dryness. Reds with firmer tannins are a natural pairing with a fattier dish like red meat, cheese or stew. Try a Cabernet Sauvignon with a bite of steak and notice how the tannins soften in your wine. Bold reds pair nicely with heartier dishes, Malbec or Syrah. 

Sweet with Spicy

Fruity or sweeter wines tone down spicy foods, whereas high alcohol, dry wines intensify the heat of spices. If you are serving spicy cuisine you need to find wines that are fruity and even a bit sweet to counteract. Whites that work with spicy food include lush whites like Riesling, Viognier, Gewürztraminer or Sauvignon Blanc. Reds that pair nicely with spicy dishes include fruity, lower tannin wines such as Beaujolais, Pinot Noir or Shiraz. 

In the end, wine pairing is subject to personal taste. Chances are you and your guests won’t always agree on what the best pairing is for each course, but these rules can simplify selecting wine pairings. 

Next time you entertain concentrate on the most important pairing enjoying time with your guests just with Cahors-Malbec! 

Cheers, 

Osvaldo

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