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Friday 2 March 2012

Weekly Wine: Tastebud Terrors And Wine Heroes

We've gone all flavourtastic in our recipes on Domestic Sluttery this week: from Hazel's scrumptious goats cheese, sundried tomato and basil muffins, to the comforting but super-tasty butternut squash and chilli dip that Elizabeth created.

Dishes like that our my favourite kind for eating but my least favourite kind for wine-matching, and they mostly leave me crying in the corner taking swigs from the nearest bottle I can find, praying for a wine hero.

Some food is just plain kryptonite to wine. While we're making a movie-esque comparison (because, frankly, why not?) certain foods (like spinach, tomatoes, egg, orange, and all manner of pungent spices) like to twirl their silly moustaches and laugh at the wine they've just tied to the train tracks. They need a super-wine to fly in and save the day.

I think you can see where I'm going with this, so if you're planning a weekend of flavour explosions then bear these wine heroes in mind:

Tomatoes - ZAP!

Yes, your acidity is over-powering, and the pungency of your sundried friends leave most whites quaking in their boots, but you didn't count on Sannio Greco storming in to show you who's boss did you? Made by some brilliant Italians, who know a thing or two about tomatoes, this wine has a flavour full enough to laugh in the face of your power, and turn you into a sweet and delicate match. It's £7.50 a bottle from The Wine Society.

Spinach - SPLAT!

Spinach might look all innocent and healthy but it has plans. Evil plans. Plans to make all wine taste metallic and yukky. It would have gotten away with it too, if it hadn't been for that pesky Dancing Coyote Petite Syrah. The deep, dark flavours with chocolatey hints make this a powerful match for those gruesome greens. It's £12.49 a bottle from Marks and Spencer.

Eggs - BLAM!

They creep up on you in quiches. The meddle in your mayonnaise. And they make wines fall flat on their faces. Who ya gonna call? GERMAN RIESLING! Like this Dr. L Mosel variety from Majestic. Dr. L (who couldn't sound more like a Bond villain if it tried, but I promise that isn't why I chose it) has the right amount of richness and delicate off-dry aromatics to crack the egg-based dishes in your life.

Asian Spices - KAPOW!

Oh, the irony. My favourite foods in the world are always my wine-nemesis. So many asian spices are delicate, aromatic and gently mouth-filling, but they sure have it in for my beverage of choice - it's just too hard for most wines to keep up with that level of delicacy. This is a wine enemy with many different forms, so without sounding too general I would say send in The Gewurztraminer for anything aromatic (like Cono Sur from Waitrose for £7.11 a bottle), and hit the gently simmering fiery dishes with something a little sweet (like Vouvray Demi-Sec from drinkfinder for £7.99).

Who are your wine heroes? Tell us all about them in the comments or swoop over to Facebook and Twitter.

Image taken from Brett Jordan's photostream under the Creative Commons License.


  1. Laura, your weekly wine column makes me immeasurably happy.

  2. This is my favourite. Most things with the word Kapow! in them are. I like the idea of spinach being so dastardly.


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