A global pandemic is the perfect time to experiment with your dining. For this fish lover that means wine pairings. I love red wine, and I love fish, and I am here to tell you that red wine lovers should feel confident pairing red wine with fish! You heard me correctly- red with fish.
The secret of a successful pairing is to match the weight and texture of the wine to that of the fish. Consider a fillet like trout or salmon sauteed in butter or olive oil poached. This will result in a light, very silky textured fish, while a roasted salmon or a batter fried walleye or pike, gives you
a heartier texture that can stand up to a more assertive (red) wine. Another factor in pairing red wine with fish is the sauce. Even a delicate white fish such as a nice New England cod served with a nicely seasoned sauce, or a blackened Louisiana red fish, can stand up to a bolder red wine.
Here's a rule of thumb- if you are serving a light sauteed or poached fish, look to lighter styles of red wine, such as a crisp dry rosé or a Pinot Noir. For heartier seafood dishes such as oysters, crab, or lobster, particularly when the seafood is served with cocktail sauce and mignonette don't be afraid to call upon a South African or New Zealand Shiraz or an Argentinean Malbec. When it comes to fish steaks such as grilled swordfish or tuna, treat it like
beef and go for the bolder wines- a cabernet or cab blend. Always consider the level of char, sauce, and your side dishes. Reds go well with roasted potatoes or grilled root vegetables. Instead of just assuming white, go red instead and make it a part of your culinary adventure!