Game Day Food & Wine Pairings from Traveling Vineyard
Written by Missa Capozzo, Director of Sommology on September 19, 2017
Football season is heating up! And, nothing makes game day more complete than the perfect food. Sure, you could just grab a six-pack of beer, but why have an average food experience when you can have an extraordinary one? This is a job for wine! Let’s take a tour of some of the most popular game day food and wine pairings that will score big points at your next tailgate or at-home viewing party.
Whether it’s Buffalo wings, Buffalo chicken dip, or Buffalo pizza, you will dazzle your taste buds by pairing this flavor with one of our off-dry white wines, such as our 2015 Calamity Sue Riesling, Lake County, California, or our 2016 Beeline Muscat Canelli, Monterey, California. Sweet loves heat, and the perfect hint of sweetness in each of these wines will complement the spicy kick of anything Buffalo.
A crisp white wine dominated by citrus, herbs and minerals, such as our 2016 Spruzzi Grillo, Terre Siciliane IGT, Italy, makes a fantastic sidekick for jalapeno peppers stuffed with goat cheese or cream cheese. Wrap them in bacon for an even fruitier taste and smoother texture. Equally delicious with jalapeno poppers is our 2016 Bella Mente Pinot Grigio, Venezie IGT, Italy, a fruit-driven, approachable, clean, crisp, refreshing wine with aromas of white flowers, melon and mineral.
Game Day Pizza
Your favorite cheese, pepperoni, sausage or Margherita pizza is a natural complement for one of our Italian red wines, such as our 2016 Scusami Nero d’Avola/Merlot, Terre Siciliane IGT. Italian reds pair exceptionally well with red sauce and Italian herbs—and pizza is no exception. The acidity of the tomato sauce, along with the salt and fat content of the cheese and meat, will smooth out the wine’s acidity, leaving a beautifully soft fruit flavor on the palate.
A hot, spicy pot of chili can be tricky to pair, but you can’t go wrong with a fruity, aromatic varietal. Although dry, our aromatic 2016 Pebble Viognier, California, will give the impression of sweetness and work to balance and complement heat and spice. Prefer a red? A lighter, fruity red that is lower in tannins, such as our 2016 Convict’s Reward Pinot Noir, South Eastern Australia, would be the perfect match.
The South African grape Pinotage produces inky, bold flavored wines with plum, blackberry, bacon and smoke flavors. This makes it an ideal varietal to pair with red meat and with bacon. And that’s the way I like my burger sliders! Add a tangy cheese into the mix, and we’re talking heaven! Our 2015 Marula Pinotage, Western Cape, South Africa is the perfect complement to bacon cheeseburger sliders—bite size burgers and big sips of a hearty red.
The tangy, yet smoky flavors of pulled pork can be beautifully complemented with a wine that exhibits red fruit supported by black pepper, smoke and tobacco. Our 2015 Boombox Syrah, California, is exactly that wine—and it’s a crowd favorite with BBQ dishes such as pulled pork or chicken. Top the pulled pork with a heaping spoonful of coleslaw, and you’ve got a taste touchdown, wine lovers.
What’s your favorite game day food? Tell us on our Facebook page! Or, share your game day food pairings on Instagram and tag us, #travelingvineyard. Go team!