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Ditch the Stuffy Sommelier! A Delicious Dance of Food & Wine Down Under

Forget the stuffy sommelier stereotype! Food and wine pairing is a vibrant celebration, a dance of bold flavours on your palate. Imagine the symphony of juicy grilled pineapple harmonising with a crisp Semillon from the Hunter Valley, or the robust spices of a slow-braised kangaroo curry finding their perfect match in a peppery Shiraz. Food and wine, a match made Down Under, waiting to be explored.

food and wine dining fancy down under

Unlocking the Secrets: Pairing Expertise Here's some suggestion on pairings for iconic dishes, designed to create a truly harmonious dining experience:

  • Barramundi with Lemon Myrtle: This delicate white fish, known for its flaky texture and subtle sweetness, sings with the citrusy notes of a cool-climate Sauvignon Blanc from Margaret River. Imagine the bright, zesty flavours of the wine dancing on your tongue, perfectly complementing the clean, fresh taste of the barramundi infused with the fragrant lemon myrtle.

Pairing Principles: Build Your Own Wine Symphony

While pairings are a delicious starting point, there are some general principles to remember as you build your own wine repertoire:

  • White Wines & Lighter Dishes: Generally, white wines pair well with lighter dishes and seafood. Their refreshing acidity cuts through richness and complements delicate flavours.

  • Red Wines & Heartier Fare: Red wines with bolder tannins stand up to the richness of red meats and hearty stews. Their robust fruit flavours complement and enhance savoury profiles.

A Chef's Touch: Pairing Inspiration

Some chefs believe in pushing boundaries and exploring regional synergy. They source the lambs from local farms, allowing the sheep to graze on the same soil where the Shiraz grapes are grown. Pairing this lamb with a bold Shiraz from McLaren Vale creates a truly harmonious experience. The terroir of the wine, reflecting the same sun and earth as the lamb, creates a beautiful link between the plate and the glass.

Here are some additional suggestions showcasing the versatility of wines:

  • Crispy Barramundi Burgers: A refreshing Pinot Grigio from Tasmania cuts through the richness of the fried fish and complements the creamy aioli sauce, creating a delightful balance of textures and flavours.

  • Grilled Crocodile with Mango Salsa: A dry Rosé from Victoria adds a touch of elegance to the experience. Its crisp acidity balances the sweetness of the mango salsa, while its subtle fruitiness complements the slightly gamey notes of the crocodile.

  • Pavlova: This iconic meringue dessert deserves a perfect ending. A sparkling Moscato from King Valley offers the ideal solution. The light bubbles and touch of sweetness dance on the palate alongside the light and airy meringue, without overpowering its delicate flavour.

Beyond the Classics: Exploring a World of Wines

While Shiraz and Chardonnay are wine staples, there's a whole world waiting to be explored. Sommelier Sarah Greene shares some hidden gems to add to your repertoire:

  • Grüner Veltliner: This crisp white wine from emerging regions like Adelaide Hills pairs beautifully with fresh seafood and lighter Asian-inspired dishes. Its bright acidity and subtle minerals creating a refreshing accompaniment.

  • Mataro (Mourvèdre): This bold red wine, a Rhône Valley grape variety that thrives in the warm climate of Barossa Valley, is a fantastic match for grilled meats and robust stews. Its intense fruit flavours and firm tannins stand up to hearty dishes.

  • Riesling: Don't underestimate the versatility of Riesling! From dry styles perfect for seafood to sweeter options ideal for desserts, Riesling from Clare Valley offers a range of pairing possibilities. Its versatility allows it to complement a wide variety of dishes.

The Final Sip: Experiment and Enjoy!

These suggestions are just a springboard for your food and wine adventure. Don't be afraid to experiment! Visit your local bottle shop, chat with the experts, and explore different wines. The best pairing is the one you enjoy the most!

So, the next time you tuck into an iconic dish, raise a glass to the perfect wine pairing. From the fresh seafood gracing the coastlines to the hearty stews simmering in the outback, offers a symphony of flavours waiting to be discovered. Embark on your own delicious adventure, one sip and one bite at a time!


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