Of all Pinot Noir’s many charms, perhaps its greatest is its versatility when it comes to pairing with food.
Reading: Best food with pinot noir
Few red wines have as many faces as Pinot.
Given the diversity of styles available to lovers of this expressive variety, it makes a sensational companion with everything from sharing plates like charcuterie to rich seafood to a variety of savoury meat dishes including game to pork.
Here are some great suggestions to kick off your next food and wine experience with Pinot Noir.
BEST MATCHES FOR LIGHTER-STYLE PINOT NOIR
Vibrant, drink-now styles of Pinot Noir from younger vines are ideal with a range of dishes, particularly starter plates and sides like salads thanks to their fresh, lighter-bodied nature and appealing texture.
Match with: Charcuterie, ham, pâtés, terrines, goat cheese, and fresh green vegetables like asparagus.
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Try this goats cheese pasta for a simple-to-prepare meal that is the ideal match for lighter-styled Pinot Noir.
BEST MATCHES FOR SWEETLY-FRUITED PINOT NOIR
Alive with bright fruit-forward flavours, such Pinot Noir proves a capable match for cuisines that have a bit of body and even spice to them – particularly game meats or aromatic Asian dishes. They’re also robust enough to pair with rich seafood dishes like salmon.
Match with: Crispy duck, grilled quail, char siu pork, seared salmon and tuna, and dishes with beetroot, figs or cherries.
Try this plank salmon recipe from Lyndey Milan for a delightfully indulgent pairing to sweetly-fruited Pinot Noir.
BEST MATCHES FOR ELEGANT PINOT NOIR
Generally arising from regions that share very similar characteristics to the Burgundy region in France, elegant Pinot Noir balances fruit flavours with smooth, structured tannins and savoury characters in silken-textured, medium-bodied wines that reveal all the nuance that the variety is so celebrated for, opening up a broad range of possible food and wine pairings from light seafoods to rich meat and poultry.
Match with: Mushroom dishes, grilled lobster, roast chicken, rack of lamb, and roast pork with fennel.
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Try this mushroom and garlic orecchiette for a ravishingly rustic wine pairing with a silky, elegant Pinot Noir.
BEST MATCHES FOR FULLER-BODIED PINOT NOIR
Pinot Noir from somewhat warmer climes is typically richer and more mouth-filling than its cooler-climate siblings, fleshy with dense fruit flavours and richly perfumed.
Such wines really come into their own when balanced with the complementary weight of red meat and rich game dishes.
Match with: Lamb, chargrilled steak, venison, cassoulet, duck, coq au vin, roast turkey, brie and blue cheeses
Try this seared venison loin with liquorice sauce and glazed parsnip colcannon for a decadent food pairing with a full-bodied Pinot Noir.
MORE GREAT FOOD AND WINE GUIDES
Looking for more great food and wine matches?
Our friends at Wine Selectors have you covered: Try their Food and Wine Pairing Essentials Guide, or their excellent Takeout Tastings series … enough to satisfy the hungriest wine lover!
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