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  • Writer's pictureSecond Opinion Magazine

Wine: Pairing It Up!

by Donna Sachs, Winemaker, River Bend Winery, Chippewa Falls

Holiday parties present a great opportunity to share good food and wine with friends and family. But stress can creep in as we try to decide what wines are best served with what foods. At River Bend Winery in Chippewa Falls, we always say there is only one rule when it comes to pairing food and wine, and that is to drink what you like. That being said, it can be great fun to come up with just the right combination of wine and food for a party. Here are a few simple tips that can be helpful when planning a dinner where wine will be served.

1. Don’t overpower the wine with the food, or vice versa. A light meal is best accompanied by a light wine. If appetizers or tapas are the feature, opt for a light white wine or a nice bubbly. If you want to serve dry, think Sauvignon Blanc or Pinot Gris.  If you want to serve sweet, think Moscato or River Bend Moonlight.

2. In general, white wines pair well with white meat and seafood, and red wines pair well with red meat and steak. If chicken or white fish are on the menu, almost any white wine will pair nicely. Pork tenderloin begs to be paired with Pinot Noir or River Bend Marquette.  A steak or rich pasta calls for bold wine…think Cabernet or a red blend.

3. Always defer to the only rule that matters: drink what you like, and therefore serve what you like. Most people are not wine connoisseurs, and they will happily drink whatever you have to offer.

As a winemaker, I am often asked what the best wine I’ve ever had is, and my honest answer is this: the one I shared with family and friends.

Cheers! • 715-720-9463

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