Wow! I made this blog months ago and haven’t used it until
today. Quarantine does wonders for free time I guess! For this wine dinner blog I will be looking at three wines paired with three foods. The three foods I had were Mac and Cheese (added pepper-jack on top), Eye Round Steak seasoned with “Foxtrot” Seasoning, and Chocolate Pudding. Paired with the Mac and Cheese I had a Shiraz called Rioja by Campo Viejo. With the Foxtrot Steak I paired a German Mulled Wine called Glühwein by Wintersaison. Finally with the pudding I paired a Moscato Spumante Champagne by Barefoot.
The Wine Contestants:
Admittedly the food won’t be winning awards anytime soon, but it was rather tasty! As a note the steak was arranged in piles where each one had a different seasoning. For my blog I will be focusing on the pile with the Foxtrot seasoning.
Shiraz x Mac and Cheese
By Itself: The Shiraz by itself had an aroma of apple, pear, and pomegranate to my nose. The taste was that of overpowering tannins, no acid, and a low sweetness. A very dry red wine. Some people like a dry wine, I am not one of them. However I was going to give it the benefit of the doubt and move onto the food pairing.
Paired: When paired with the mac and cheese the story changed slightly. It actually turned into a nice pairing for a couple of reasons. Firstly, the Mac and Cheese has a very “mono-taste”. Almost all of the taste comes from the cheese on the mac, so it helped contrast the intricacy of the red wine. One interesting side effect was the pronounced spice that came from the pairing. The spice came from the topping of pepper-jack cheese that was untastable without the Shiraz, but when paired together the spice came out wonderfully. I give the pairing a solid 7/10.
Steak x German Mulled Wine
By Itself: This wine was much more pleasant to me. When sniffing this wine I actually couldn’t detect nearly anything. I thought I caught a slight hint of banana but even that was hard to tell. Upon tasting it had a wonderfully fruity and sweet taste. I had no trouble detecting that strawberry with almost a mango finish. It was very smooth, almost no tannin, with acid and sweetness well balanced (perhaps leaning more towards sweet).
Paired: Combining this with Foxtrot Round Steak was probably the best idea I’ve had on quarantine. The Mulled Wine added a lovely base layer that allowed the spice of the steak to jump out. It also hid the powerful blood taste that could be detected when eating the steak sans wine. Almost no acid could be detected in this combo. All in all I give it a 9/10 rating. I would go higher but this is my first pairing and I don’t want to get overzealous.
Moscato Spumante Champagne x Chocolate Pudding
By Itself: The champagne had an incredibly sweet aroma to it. Almost had a scent of watermelon or another type of melon perhaps (maybe honeydew?). It also had more grassy or floral hints that made me think of honeysuckle (noticing a honey theme?). The taste was very different than the smell however. Upon tasting it made me think of grapefruit soda. Much more bitter than it smelled, it was like a cranberry and grapefruit flavored San Pelgrino (don’t sue me).
Paired: There are people that would very much enjoy the wine, but almost no one would enjoy this pairing. The chocolate did not pair well at all with the bitter, fruity taste of the wine. The pudding was flat (as puddings are want to be) and it was a very high contrast to the bubbly aggressive champagne. Although the bottle said it would pair with ‘sweet deserts’ I do not recommend this combination at all. My roomate tried it with vanilla icecream and said it was delightful, but this review focuses on the chocolate pudding pairing so it will remain negative in my opinion. Overall I give it a 3/10. It could’ve been worse, but not much worse.
Anyway that was my wine dinner pairings! Hopefully I’ll be back next week with higher production value and better pairings.