The air carries a slight chill, the leaves have a hint of color, and the meals are getting heartier. It can only mean fall is blowing in. The beauty of the season is in the bounty of its harvest. This is the time to infuse your menu with all those wonderful fall flavors paired with some scrumptious cold-weather wines.
Popular flavors in food and drink include:
While there is no hard and fast rule that says you must cook with these flavors or change your wine offerings by the season, it can be fun to explore fall’s fare.
Colder weather meals tend to be heavier and packed with a variety of flavors. Favorite wines in fall seem to follow suit. Look for wines that are heavier, oak-aged, and full-bodied to take center stage. You might even consider serving up a house-recipe mulled wine to peak interest. You don’t have to wear a sommelier’s apron to pair food and wine.
You could stick with classic pairings like:
- Sangiovese and tomato sauce
- Pinot Noir with duck
- Cabernet Sauvignon with steak
Or, you could try something different like:
- Chablis with Elote
- Spicy chili with Riesling
- Semi-Sweet white with apple crisp
A few simple tips to match up great food and wine include:
- Match the structure of the food with the structure of the wine
- Offset a structural element of the food with the wine
- Try regional flavors together
Fall food and wine pairings help chefs and guests get in the spirit of the season. Take care to consider how these flavors and tips can improve your business this fall.