Wine and food pairings is a classic partnership between flavors and aromas, and while both kinds of pairings have been discussed before, this article will offer a particular focus on wines that make for great synergy with salmon, so what wine goes with salmon?
Some people may follow the wine and fish pairing religiously, and there is nothing wrong with that, but the beauty of salmon is because of how complex the flavors can be depending on how it is cooked, a number of wines actually go really well with it. It is just a matter of providing a measure of contrast between the richness of the fish and body of the wine.
Because salmon is much richer fish when compared to other fish that have milder tastes, such as tilapia or cod. Actually pairing salmon and red wine can be tricky, but great red wines that accompany salmon excellently are those with a lighter body. The goal is to create a contrast after all, a full bodied red wine would only create an overwhelming sensation in one's taste buds.
A few examples of light-bodied red wines that have great synergy with salmon are Zinfandel, Grenache, and Bordeaux.
Because of white wine's naturally lighter flavors, innate crispness, and higher acidity levels, it helps cut through the oily richness of the salmon. Another reason it goes so well together is because the lighter flavors do not overpower the fish, and do not create an oversaturation of flavors on your tongue.
Full-bodied white wines are optimal for those that enjoy a red wine but want a smooth accompaniment taste to go with their salmon.
A number of white wines go well with this fish, but a few examples include oaked Chardonnay, Pinot Grigio, and Riesling.
In a manner of speaking, rosés can be considered the best of both worlds; offering light flavors of a white wine combined with the fruity undertones of a red wine. Specifically, the best rosé to match with salmon is a dry one.
The dryness of a good rosé can help cut through the salmon's richness, while the fruity undertone complement the natural flavors of the fish.
If you are looking for a good rosé, you may want to look into a Pinot Noir dry rosé, a Sangiovese, or even a Syrah. Those happen to go really well with salmon.
This particular pairing, however, is not limited to drinking wine while eating salmon, but also using said wine of choice as a cooking ingredient in conjunction with the fish. For example, using an unoaked Chardonnay as the base of a sauce would help accentuate the fish's natural flavors.
When it comes to drinking, though, the way the fish is cooked also matters. For example, if you are in the mood for white wine, poaching the fish would be a great option for how to cook it. Whereas grilling the fish would make for an excellent companion to a lovely red wine.
What is your favorite way to pair salmon?