Uncovering the perfect wine and takeaway pairings
A night in front of a good film with a takeaway and a great bottle wine is one of our favourite guilty pleasures. But it can be tricky to know what wine goes best with a pizza or a bowl of ramen. Luckily sommelier Bert Blaize and food guru Claire Strickett have done the research on this conundrum. In their book 'Which Wine When: What to Drink with the Food you Love,' Claire and Bert uncover the perfect wine and takeaway pairings.
Which Wine When
When we wrote Which Wine When, we wanted to include lots of everyday foods to make it easier for people who are new to the world of wine to relate to our suggestions. We figured that if you could see the foods you love to eat in our book, you’ll be intrigued to experiment with the wines we suggest too. And we also included takeaways. Because meals eaten at home with wine bought from a shop means that you can pair your takeaway with a finer bottle than you might in a restaurant.
Bert Blaize and Claire Strickett, authors of ‘Which Wine When: What to Drink with the Food you Love.’
Pizza was one of the most popular choices for wine pairings when we started writing the book, and it’s also one of our favourite go-to meals. But the wine pairing really does depend on the toppings, so we’ve created a guide to help you work out what’s best.
Pizza toppings wine pairings
Fish & Chips
This is the ultimate British takeaway, so we think it’s best paired with a classic English wine. Fish & chips is nothing without a sprinkling of vinegar, a good squeeze of lemon, or a gherkin – this acidity counteracts the richness of the fish and perks up the chips. And the right wine can help with this too. English Blanc de Blanc has high levels of acidity, and combined with the refreshing effect of bubbles, is a wine that will cut through the food’s glorious greasiness. The eto wine decanter can’t preserve this sparkling wine (or any sparkling wine), so invite friends over to enjoy a fish and chip feast and help you finish this bottle of bubbles.
Umami is one of the five basic tastes, and a good bowl of ramen is full of it – from the rich, silky stock of the soup to the eggs and meat that are often added to the noodles. All these umami flavours need something zesty and fresh to cut through the savoury taste and keep you feeling refreshed. Picpoul wines have extremely high natural acidity, which make them ideal to drink alongside a steaming bowl of ramen. They have plenty of body too, so won’t be overpowered by the richness of the ingredients.
Japanese takeaway wine pairings
A spicy chicken shawarma kebab needs something super refreshing to cut through its fattiness and bring out its flavour. Vinho Verde whites have really high acidity, making them a dream match for this takeaway favourite. If you prefer a lamb doner, then try a Mosel Riesling. A doner kebab is very fatty, so you need a wine with loads of refreshing acidity to cut straight through that richness, and also enough texture to match up to the full-on nature of a kebab. Mosel Riesling has both of these in spades.
An off-dry white, like this KIN Pinot Gris from Kinsbrook Vineyard, works wonders with sushi and ramen
About Bert and Claire
Having previously worked at La Belle Epoque in Manchester, Le Manoir aux Quat Saisons, Clove Club and the Mandrake Hotel, Bert has been named in the top 50 most influential people in the wine industry by Drinks Business and nominated by GQ for ‘Sommelier of the year.’
Claire Strickett has worked in kitchens, then restaurant marketing, publicity and recipe writing for leading chefs and restauranteurs, including Skye Gyngell, Rowley Leigh, Russell Norman, Gail’s Bakery and Byron.
If you are not planning on staying in and are heading out for dinner, discover our guide on how to talk to your sommelier.