Chardonnay is still one of the most renowned white wines in the world. From the Chablis of Burgundy, to the new world styles from New Zealand and also Australia, it’s a household name. Yet lately, there’s a feeling that chardonnay is no longer setting the globe on fire. Up and comers like sauvignon blanc, riesling and pinot gris are the hot white wines today, while chardonnay appears to have actually come to be a little ho-hum.
That’s a bit of a shame because when it comes to vegetarian food matching, there’s no white wine as versatile and as appropriate as chardonnay. It can be oaked or unoaked. It could be young or mature. But it must constantly be an option when you’re seeking a partner for your vegetarian masterpiece. Regardless of the style of the wine, chardonnay and vegetarian food were made for each other, as you will uncover. You’ll likewise notice that the same dishes turn up several times under differing chardonnay styles. For example, ‘creamy pasta’ will go well with oaked chardonnay, unoaked chardonnay, youthful chardonnay or mature chardonnay … but for different reasons. This is a perfect example of the ‘no rules’ philosophy that should always put on wine and food pairing. Your personal preference is much more important than following a couple of guidelines. But there’s absolutely nothing incorrect with a couple of pairing tips. As well as here they are!
The mouthwatering level of acidity and crisp fruit of a youthful chardonnay integrate to create a wine which really feels refreshingly light on the palate. A young chardonnay will match beautifully with equally delicate vegetarian dishes, or it serves as a nice contrast to heavier, creamier fare. Remember, contrast in wine and vegetarian food matching can be equally as satisfying as a flavour or structure suit, so do not be afraid to go for a light wine to balance out a massive dish.
Set young chardonnay with:
- Vegetarian pasta or risotto– Believe comparison. Light, crisp wine offsets the carbohydrate of pasta or rice.
- Eco-friendly salad– no concern of those delicate fallen leaves ‘shriveling’ when teamed with a light chardonnay
- Tomato meals– the acids of a young chardonnay take on the ‘zing’ of tomatoes
- Velvety pasta– a fantastic wine to lighten the massive structure of the cream sauce
- Chilled soup– crisp chardonnay will not disturb the fragile flavour/texture balance. A risk-free option.
It’s not only red wines that develop with age. A chardonnay with a couple of years under its belt creates a velvety structure that rolls over the tongue with silky smoothness. The flavours have changed too, from the fruitiness as well as level of acidity of a youthful wine to something more buttery– some also liken the characters of a fully grown chardonnay to butterscotch. If you think a creamy, buttery chardonnay would go well with creamy, buttery mashed potatoes … you’re right!
Pair mature chardonnay with:
- Potato based dishes– consider a huge blob of butter on your potatos. Perfect!
- Creamy pasta or risotto– a great texture match, able to stand up to the weight of this recipe.
- Truffle or mushroom recipes– the buttery flavours integrate perfectly with ‘woodland floor’ meals!
- Camembert as well as other creamy cheeses– the soft structures of both components merge beautifully
- Butter grain cassoulet– as seen on this blog site. Hearty and buttery.
Unoaked/lightly oaked chardonnay
Unoaked or lightly oaked chardonnay is free ‘n easy, and unburdened by oak. This makes it a pleasant and straightforward drinking wine and, when it comes to meals, an undemanding partner. Unoaked chardonnay is something of an empty canvas as you don’t have to consider the extra characters and flavours that oak give the supper event.
Set unoaked/lightly oaked chardonnay with:
- Pizza– a pizza offers several different flavours. Unoaked wines won’t confuse the issue.
- Pasta with cream sauce– the refined flavours of the sauce won’t be overwhelmed by this wine.
- Black bean sauce– the fruit characters of the wine work well unlike the seasoning of the sauce.
- Asparagus– the full-on green characters in the asparagus are reduced by the wine’s acid.
- Tofu– a velvety tofu responds well with this lighter style chardonnay A good contrast.
Chardonnay and also oak are absolutely a better match than Madonna and Sean Penn. Or Madonna and Warren Beatty. Or Madonna and Guy … oh, you get the idea? OK, allow’s move on. Oak could transform a chardonnay, in the way salt and pepper can lift flavours to improve a meal. That’s a good way to think about oak … as a flavoring, adding spice to the wine and offering it complexity and interesting ‘toasty’ flavours. Since oak adds quite a bunch of flavour to wine, and meals, it is a great way to lift some dishes that often tend to blandness otherwise properly skilled.
Pair oaked chardonnay with:
- Barbecued or grilled veggies– toasty oak is an all-natural suit for great smoky barbecue flavours.
- Pumpkin or squash based meals– an oaky, crazy chardonnay lifts these flavours considerably
- Pasta with cream or butter based sauces– a perfect weight match.
- Pan fried haloumi– think of the oak as a spices for this simple cheese dish
- Asian dishes– seasoning with spice!
Remember, these suggestions are just that. Pointers. You might have your very own pairing suggestions. Yet this guide gives you some idea of chardonnay’s flexibility. So let’s not be too hasty to write off chardonnay as a brilliant match for vegetarian food.