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Wine to pair with Indian food


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I am going to cook an Indian meal friday.

Not sure what dishes, but I shall cook from two books, both by our experts from egullet.

I have ordered books by Monica Bhide and Suvir Saran. They arrive later today and what inspires me shall be prepared for mom, girl friend and non-indian friends.

What wines would be safe ones for me to buy? Any ideas?

Or am I too naive to think I can buy wines in advance of having a menu planned?

Guidelines for pairing wine with Indian food??

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If you're looking to complement and enhance the falvors of the dishes, I find that a off-dry or even dry Gewurztraminer or Riesling does nicely, as dose any fairly good sparkling wine. A local celebrity Indian chef here swears by Australian shiraz but I've found that all you're left with is enormous heat on the palate.

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I'm beating a dead horse as well as siding with Adamello... An Alsatian-style Gewurtz is the most amazing wine with ANYTHING remotely spicy.

The barest hint of a residual sugar (not the sickly sweet Gewurtzs or Rieslings) in a wine complements and counters the heat in Thai, Indian, Asian and even Mexican foods. I also enjoy these styles of German wines (and the few California wines made in this style) with Gumbo, Jambalaya, and spicy New Orleans-style cuisine.

It surprises me when even the most upscale of Indian and/or Chinese restaurants don't promote this amazing pairing...

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Another option to gewurz or riesling if the dishes are not too too fiery would be a nice Loire valley rose.

If someone writes a book about restaurants and nobody reads it, will it produce a 10 page thread?

Joe W

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perhaps offer mango lassie (sp.) cocktails

my father in law is indian and drinks whiskey or beer

indian beer is good with indian ( :rolleyes: that would be a given)

i have eaten a lot of indian food and can honestly say wine has never really played a part unless it's maybe one glass before.

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The beer and Indian pairing is common, and seems to be enjoyed by many, but it does nothing for me. Perhaps it's because people that enjoy beer enjoy spicy food! Anyway, I would go the extra mile for your guests and simultaneously promote the cause of enjoying Indian with wine by sticking with a wine pairing...

I second the Loire valley and California options. Another great match is Bonny Doon Cigare vin de gris, served lightly chilled, which is awesome. Maybe also the Traminer from Roshambo Winery, which is a stylish new world rendition of a Alsatian Gewurtztraminer. Crisp and refreshing!!

As mentioned, I would go with a Gewurtz or Riesling with a (very) small amount of residual sugar rather than the straight-out sweet ones that appear all-too-often on store shelves.

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Years ago the Quebec liquor board carried Royal Maharashtra's Marquise de Pompadour, a tasty non-vintage sparkler made from grapes grown southeast of Bombay. Full-bodied, yeasty/toasty, even a bit oxydized (in a good way, like aged Champagne). Worked well enough with mildly spiced Indian fare, especially seafood.

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A local celebrity Indian chef here swears by Australian shiraz but I've found that all you're left with is enormous heat on the palate.

Ademello, I can imagine this being the case. I got the same sensation when I have taken the suggestion of pairing Zinfandel with spicy Mexican food or a bowl of chili…that, and I feel the tannins get really harsh with hotter foods.

I am agreeing with the beer suggestions. This is just my opinion, of course, but I just feel that wine is lost on spicy food. And if a dish is spicy enough, there is no wine that will stand up to it. I say, "Beer me!" :biggrin:

All the best,

Jean

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do wines with higher residual sugar contents go better with hot food?

Not really. Higher RS just means they are exponentially sweeter. Sweeter doesn't necessarily mean it combats heat more. Some wines that are 4% or 5% RS are downright syrupy and are dessert wines. It is ones that are less than 1% RS that seem to work better with the spicy cuisine, IMHO.

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If you want to drink wine with curry rather than beer or lassi (a good idea but make it light), then gewurtztraminer is the obvious answer. However, I would warn that with anything beyond very mildly spiced the nuances of the wine will be lost and I wouldn't spend too much on the wine.

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I am going to cook an Indian meal friday.

Not sure what dishes, but I shall cook from two books, both by our experts from egullet.

I have ordered books by Monica Bhide and Suvir Saran.  They arrive later today and what inspires me shall be prepared for mom, girl friend and non-indian friends.

What wines would be safe ones for me to buy? Any ideas? 

Or am I too naive to think I can buy wines in advance of having a menu planned?

Guidelines for pairing wine with Indian food??

Usually a German Riesling, a fruty Kabinett or Spatlese goes best with the spices and heat. I have even paired a riesling such as this with spicy beef dishes so don't be afraid of the red wine with meat rule.

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In my limited experience we drank Heineken with the apps and Gewurztraminer with the main dishes. However, the real surprise came with how well the beaujolais paired with the spicy food. Likely any fresh non - tannic red would pair well as to not emphasize the heat of the food.

Salute!

Ripasso

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  • 2 years later...

This week the San Francisco Chronicle presents a trio of articles on matching Indian wines with food:

On selecting wines to pair with Indian food:

The Chronicle Pairing Guide: The Spice is Right, written by SF columnist and eG Society member Jon Bonne

It will not be found with Gewurztraminer. That varietal's spicy profile can work every now and then, but it usually collides with the nuances of Indian food. Almost every Indian dish begins with a blend of spices, so our challenge was to find out which spices warm up to which wines.

A list of SF Chronicle wine selections:

Wines to Pair with Indian Food

And a list of Wine-Friendly Indian Restaurants in the SF area.

_____________________

Mary Baker

Solid Communications

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Thai wine goes nicely with Indian food too as it tends to work well with the spices, Monsoon Valley is a very cheap and chearful easy drinking label. Interestingly i also tried some Chinese Wine recently, couldn't tell you the grape varierties unfortunately but both white and red had a weird hubba bubba after taste! An experience but not worth repeating.

"Experience is something you gain just after you needed it" ....A Wise man

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Thai wine goes nicely with Indian food too as it tends to work well with the spices, Monsoon Valley is a very cheap and chearful easy drinking label. Interestingly i also tried some Chinese Wine recently, couldn't tell you the grape varierties unfortunately but both white and red had a weird hubba bubba after taste! An experience but not worth repeating.

Commercial Post...

Sula Wines - India - Sold in the USA

RAF

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I recently had some Niepoort's Tiara which I think may be a world beater when it comes to complimenting spicy food. The Tiara started out as a portugese Riesling but I think it has ended up in pinot blanc slightly gewurtz territory. Nobody with me enjoyed but I got really carried away with it, perhaps it was the balls in trying to produce a portugese riesling.

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Greetings,

To add my tuppence to the general discussion, whilst I agree with most of what has been said regarding pairing Indian food with wine...the honest answer has to be that, in general, wine simply doesnt work with Indian food. Neither does beer, not from the point of view of matching tastes.

The synergy between wine and food is complex and multi-faceted. Ppl far smarter than me can get into discussions ranging from "if it grows together, it grows together" to comparing GC-MS profiles of different wines and therefore what foods they are likely to pair with on a chemical-matching level.

However, whilst some wines may "hit" with Indian food, I have to reiterate that overall, pairing one with the other is unlikely to enhance ones enjoyment of either. Same goes for beer. Traditionally, in my household and where my family is from in India, only water is taken with meals, and that too usually after the meal is finished, so as not to occupy space that could be filled with food!

Hope your party went/goes well!

Raj

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