"What Grows Together, Goes Together" Pairings: Go-To Food and Wine Matches for Year-Round Enjoyment
This all leads back to the concept of terroir – meaning that the climate, topography, and overall growing conditions of a region affect its natural resources alike. Since wine is a product of the land, it only makes sense that the raw materials that share its foundation would make for a match made in heaven. Not sure where to begin? We’ve got seven solid pairings to get you started. Check them out below.
Note: When considering “what grows together, goes together” pairings, we recommend keeping the standard food-and-wine-pairing guidelines in mind, too. In addition to thinking about regional similarities, don’t forget to consider the acid, tannins, and overall structure of a given wine when putting your pairings together.
Pinot Noir and Beef Stew (Boeuf Bourguignon)
Pinot Noir finds its roots in Burgundy, and the region’s eponymous, beef-based stew is simply a match made in heaven with its local wines. The bright acidity, soft tannins, and earthy flavor profile of Pinot Noir is a perfect match for boeuf bourguignon, though really any hearty stews laden with meats or mushrooms (vegetarian included!) will work just fine here. Crockpot dinner, anyone?
Sauvignon Blanc and Goat Cheese
In the realm of regional wine pairings, Sauvignon Blanc and goat cheese is one of the most obvious – and truthfully, one of the best. While the most common iteration of this pairing is Sancerre, Pouilly-Fumé, or Touraine Sauvignon Blanc with zesty Loire Valley goat cheese, this world-class marriage can equally be executed with New Zealand cheese and wine, too. The bright, herbaceous nature of Sauvignon Blanc emphasizes the tanginess found in pungent goat cheese; serve on salads, crostini, or simply enjoy on its own to taste one of the best examples of “grows together, goes together” pairings.
Malbec and Barbecued Meats (hello, Asado!)
Although Malbec finds its origins in France’s Bordeaux / South West areas, the grape has made a solid home for itself in Argentina’s Mendoza region – which is why flavor-packed meats, veggies, and fixins from regional asados make for an ideal pairing with Malbec from the surrounding area. From smoky, barbecued meats to hearty peppers, sausages, and beyond, the well-integrated tannins and plush, dark-fruited flavors of Malbec promise an impeccable food-and-wine pairing experience.
Champagne and Brie de Meaux (and Other Soft Cheeses)
Champagne is truly a jack of all trades, meaning that there’s really nothing that the wine won’t pair well with. However, for a regional pairing to go the limits, look no further than Brie de Meaux cheese. The mushroomy, earth-driven flavors of the cheese are amplified by the bright acidity and warming, slightly toasty flavors to be found in local regional bubbles. The wine’s zesty acid also cuts through the fatty nature of the cheese, both amplifying its flavors while quenching the palate all at once. Should Brie not be your thing, other soft-rind cheeses and triple creams work just as well.
Nebbiolo and Truffles / Mushroom Risotto
For food and wine lovers, Piedmont is one of the best regions in the game. Home to signature pastas, earth-driven truffles, and complex, ageworthy bottles produced from the area’s indigenous Nebbiolo grape, the “grows together, goes together” pairings to be found in this region are nothing short of magnificent. The high acid, prominent tannins, and floral-driven nature of Nebbiolo-based wines are a no brainer with the region’s signature hearty cuisine; whether vitello tonnato, melt-in-your-mouth agnolotti, or sumptuous white truffles are more your thing, sipping a glass of regional Barolo, Barbaresco, or Langhe Nebbiolo promises to overdeliver.
Sauternes and Foie Gras
For the most luxurious “grows together, goes together” pairing of them all, look no further than Sauternes and foie gras. Frequently referred to as liquid gold, these unctuous, sweet French wines offer some of the most opulent tasting experiences out there – and who says their food pairings have to be sweet? Contrary to popular belief, some of the best food pairings for sweet wines are actually savory – think foie gras, pungent blue cheese, and more. Don’t worry, we were once skeptical of this pairing too, but we promise it’s absolutely one of the best there is.
Sangiovese and All Things Tomato
Tuscany and tomato-based recipes go hand in hand. From panzanella salad to tomato-forward pasta sauces to Pappa al Pomodoro (Tuscan Tomato Soup), there’s no better wine pairing for these tangy, flavorful recipes than a pour of local Sangiovese. The vibrant acidity, solid structure, and underlying tomato leaf notes found in the wines of Chianti, Montalcino, and Vino Nobile di Montepulciano promise to bring out the best of the region’s local fare. While we may not be able to get you on the next flight to the region, these “grows together, goes together” pairings are a great place to begin your mental transport.