Monday, November 26, 2007

Food and Wine matching... don't drink vintage wine!

Much has been written these past few weeks about what wine to drink with your Thanksgiving turkey. Now that the entertaining season is here I am sure we will see lots more on the subject of food and wine matching.
"WHAT to DRINK with WHAT you EAT" is a great source of information and is a must have if you are interested in food and wine matching. Another good source is the extensive list offered by Natalie MacLean at Nat Decants
Hugh Johnson received a flurry of attention when he recently claimed that vintages do not matter any more. And of course he is right and of course he is wrong. Modern wine making technology can almost rescue even a bad vintage but
some years the wine gods do smile particularly favorably on
vineyards with resulting outstanding wines. But I don't think Hugh meant it literally, he just meant that wine makers have a lot of options today to make better wines on an almost yearly basis. After all, as one writer observed, Hugh's Annual Pocket Wine Book would become obsolete if every vintage turned out the same. Got me thinking though about outstanding vintage wines. Would you really match them with a great meal? Or does a special meal deserve to be matched with a good wine and the great vintage wine left to be enjoyed all on its own? I love matching food and wine but I would rather save my collection of better wines for a special occasion. In fact drinking them is the special occasion.
So now that we don't have to worry about great vintages anymore what is left? Terroir of course! Can you believe it? Those Germans have proved the concept of terroir actually matters.
But then this is something the French have known forever. Talk to any wine maker in the Bordeaux, Burgundy or Champagne regions.
I took this photograph while visiting Champagne.
It is just down and across the road from Taitinger. That's pure chalk and its a perfect terroir for the great wines from Champagne!
As Frank Sinatra once crooned about "Love and Marriage, Go together like a horse and carriage" But I tell you, vintage or non vintage, when you get that perfect match of food and wine, now that is a marriage made in heaven!! Bon appetite!


Natalie MacLean said...

thanks Wilf for mentioning my food and wine matcher! Hope you'll join my free e-newsletter.


Wilf K. said...

Thank you for stopping by, Natalie!
I have been enjoying your newsletter
for a few years now. I signed up under
Maybe a little early, but best of the season to you.