Did you know that the oldest wine ever discovered is more than 8,000 years old? While wine has been around for thousands of years, the people of the past did not know much about the art of steak and wine pairing. If you've never experimented with pairing red or white wine with a certain cut of steak before, you've been missing out.
That's because wine and certain types of steak can do well to complement each other and bring out the other's unique flavors. By consuming them together, you can discover flavors and notes that you've never noticed before. But how should you go about choosing the best wine and the best steak for this venture?
Keep reading and learn more about the art of steak and wine pairing.
How to Pair Red Wine with Steaks
Red wine tends to pair best with steaks in contrast to white wines. This, of course, doesn't mean that you can never pair white wine with a cut of steak. However, it is a harder task.
That's because red wine and steak naturally share some similar flavors and flavor profiles. For that reason, it is quite easy to find a red wine that brings out the flavors of a good steak (and a steak that brings out the flavors of the wine). There are many types of steaks you can choose from such as a ribeye steak or a filet mignon.
Whatever steak you choose, the red wine you choose will want to be on the drier side. If you choose a red wine that has a sweet flavor profile, it won't go very well with the steak on your plate. That's because steaks are savory and tend to have salty, fatty, and herbal flavors.
If you try to pair those flavors with the notes of sweet red wine, your taste buds are going to clash and you won't be able to enjoy the combination. On the other hand, if you choose a dry red wine, the dryness of the wine will allow the drink to be more subtle and earthy.
This will better complement the flavor profile of the steak itself. More than that, the wine won't be able to overpower the flavors of the steak. And, of course, the flavor of the steak should not overpower the flavor of the wine either.
The trick is to find the perfect balance between the two. That way, the hints and notes that hit your taste buds will harmonize perfectly. But how should you go about pairing white wine with steak?
How to Pair White Wine with Steaks
Pairing white wine with steaks can be a bit tricky if you aren't too familiar with the flavor profiles of different white wines and steaks. The main thing you should know is that you should pair white wine only with steaks that are leaner and lighter. That's because white wine itself is on the lighter side.
For that reason, it can easily get overpowered if the steak is too strong. In general, it is harder to achieve a balance between the flavors of steak and white wine, but it is not impossible. For example, a porterhouse steak is much too intense to be paired with white wine, no matter what kind of wine it is.
On the other hand, filet mignon is much lighter and softer so it can pair better with white wine. There is also not much fat on filet mignon. You will want to avoid steaks that are too fatty because the white wine won't be able to cut through the thick flavors of the fat.
White wines that have been aged in oak barrels tend to pair better with steaks than ordinary white wines. That's because aged whites have more intense flavor profiles and these profiles better complement the rich flavors of different steaks.
The way you cook the steak can also make a big difference. For example, if you overcook a steak, its flavor will be very earthy and deep. For that reason, you'll have a harder time pairing it with white wines.
On the other hand, if you cook the steak rare or medium-rare, the flavor will be much lighter and smoother. This lighter and smoother flavor profile can go perfectly with various types of white wines. Keep that in mind the next time you cook a steak.
How to Pair Wine with Fatty Steaks
A steak that has the right amount of fat can do wonders. It will give plenty of flavor to the meat itself and it will ensure that the meat doesn't dry out. But there is a problem: if you don't have a wine that is strong enough to cut through the fat, your wine will be overpowered by the steak.
When you're eating a fatty steak, you will want to choose a wine that has high tannins. The tannins give the wine a bit of a bite and brightness. Some people don't like wine with high tannin levels because the flavor is too strong.
However, when you pair this kind of wine with a fatty, steak the flavors start to balance out. The high tannins will be able to cut through the fat so your mouth won't feel so greasy. Because both the wine and steak have strong flavors, they will be able to harmonize when they come in contact with your taste buds.
The Perfect Steak and Wine Pairing
Steak and wine pairing doesn't have to be as difficult as you might expect. All you have to do is think about how the flavors of the wine and steak will complement each other.
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