Planning a spicy meal & want to pair a wine with it? Odds are great that you should open a Riesling & Relax! Summer begs us to drink a light refreshing wine, right? Are you seeking a white wine to pair with your summer fun? Riesling & Relax.
Serving a spicy dish? Riesling & Relax! In particular, Asian cuisine pairs excellently with Riesling.
Taking a Closer Look at Riesling …
Rieslings are made all over the world and vary drastically from region to region. This is also known as a gateway wine for white wine drinkers that are trying to get into white wine but don’t like the tartness or dryness of white wines. If you have ever heard someone order “the sweetest white wine you have” Riesling is the wine for them!
Riesling can be either sweet or dry. Sweet Rieslings are often made to hide lesser quality grapes (often true for sweeter wines). However, you can often “find a diamond in the rough” with different Sweet Rieslings. Meanwhile, Dry Rieslings come from some of the most desirable grapes in the world according to connoisseurs.
Our West Coast Rieslings boast more fruity and floral aromatics than other regions – this of course is due to our soil. The West Coast is large, so you can truly explore the different terroir through sampling the many different rieslings. California Rieslings give your palate a lot to enjoy with soft diverse flavors.
In contrast, Oregon and Washington state produce crisp and light Rieslings. In fact, this varietal is being grown much more often in Washington. These vintners produce lovely wines ranging from very dry to very sweet.
When to Drink a Riesling …
Most folks drink this varietal while the wines are young; however, the high acidity lends itself to aging well. Petrol notes may be more prevalent as these wines age. You may become interested in studying how the differing sweetness levels changes their preferred cellaring times. Though … isn’t it hard to wait when a wine so so tasty?
Rieslings are typically floral, perfume and high in acid. Great with food or by itself. Certainly, if I’m relaxing poolside , going on a picnic or just sitting down with a nice piece of cheese … I’m popping a bottle of Riesling!
Our CKJY Exports team particularly enjoys pairing Rieslings with Asian inspired dishes. Claire Logsdon shares some of her favorite recipes to pair with this versatile light wine. While she has some of her own favorites, here Claire shares the best from two of her favorite cookbooks featuring her favorites Asian cuisines and wine. Wine with Asian Food/ New Frontiers in Taste by Patricia Guy & Edwin Soon and Pairing Wine with Asian Food by Edwin Soon have recently become favorites for their delicious suggestions.
Riesling is an Aromatic Wine with a great depth of range! How to tell if a Riesling is sweet or dry? If the bottle does not tip you off, there are ways to check. If a wine is sweeter, it generally is has a lower ABV or alcohol by volume.
Riesling Pairing Notes & Recipe Suggestions –
Sweet Riesling – Balance your favorite spicy dishes with the sweet sensation of Riesling
– Nasi Goreng Dish – Indonesia
o Indonesian Fried Rice, a well loved recipe that everyone has their own interpretation of. However, you make this special fried rice with eggs, meatballs, veggies, chicken beef or shrimp… pairing it with a sweet Riesling will not disappoint
– Mango Kerabu – Malaysian
o This spicy sweet mango salad, different from the Thai version is made from ripe, sweet mangoes. The sweet taste is tempered with a tinge of chili and lifted by fragrant cilantro. Dry wines would taste sour with this dessert, that is why a sweet Riesling is perfect!
o * Recommended pairing from pairing Wine with Asian Food – New Frontiers in Taste by Patricia Guy & Edwin Soon
– Spiced Mussels – India
o This is Anglo- Indian dish was inspired by the English colonials a beautiful medly of flavors.
– Imperial- Grilled Ribs – China
o The sweetness of Riesling will bond with the honey and savory flavors of the dish.
- 2 lbs (1 kg) pork spareribs
- 2 tsp lard or butter
- 1 chilli seeds, removed and chopped
- 2 tbsp tomato sauce
- 1 tbsp honey
- 2 tbsp light soy sauce
- 1 tbsp sweet chili sauce
- 2 tbsp Hoisin sauce
- 1 tbsp sherry
- 1 tsp five-spice powder
- ½ tbsp. lime juice
- 1 tsp chopped garlic
- 1 tsp pepper
- Wash and towel dry the spareribs. Combine the ingredients for the marinade and marinate the pork for about 4 hours in the refrigerator.
- Line an baking tray with foil to collect the juice and drippings for the basting. Heat a grill or oven to 450F (230 C). Brush the meat with the lard and grill or bake for 10 minutes turning once to brown the other side. Reduce the heat to 300F (150 C) and cook for a further 20 minutes, basting the meat with the drippings and marinade. Garnish with the chopped chili. This dish can be served hot or cold.
Pairing Wine with Asian Food Suggestions for a “Dry Riesling”
Pairs well with oily, lighter meats like duck or bacon
– Sushi – Japan
o A tangy, crisp white wine when feasting on sushi. Whether is delicious seafood topped nigir-sushi, makisushi and temaki. A dry Riesling can dance with the variety of different flavors and sensations
o Recommended pairing from Pairing Wine with Asian Food
– Shrimp Tempura – Japan
o A delicious deep fried treat? Try a dry Riesling, it is a surprising and wonderful partner for this pairing.
o Recommended pairing from Pairing Wine with Asian Food
– Cantonese Steamed Snapper – China
o The Cantonese region of china has a semitropical climate that allows for delicious, lighter and aromatic foods year round. This red snapper is just one of the amazing dishes. A Dry Riesling will match the light yet full quality of the fish.
- 1 snapper, 1 ½ lbs cleaned and scaled
- 1 tbsp finely sliced ginger
- 2 tsp white Chinese rice wine
- 1 scallion (spring onion) shredded
- 2 tbsp soy sauce
- 1 tsp sesame oil
- White Pepper
- 1 stalk of cilantro (coriander leaves) torn in sprigs
o Wash and pat the fish dry. Place the shredded scallion into heat-proof serving dish and then place the fish on top. Marinate the fish with ginger, Chinese rice wine, soy sauce, and sesame oil and leave to stand for 30 minutes.
– Prepare a steamer or a large wok for steaming. If you are using a wok, place a cake tin or steaming stand in the wok to support the dish of fish. Pour in enough water to bring the water level to 2 inches (5cm) beneath the top of the cake tin or stand.
Bring the water to a boil. Place the dish containg the marinated fish on the support. Cover and steam over high heat for 10 mintues. These fish is done when its eyes turn white and begin to bulge. Remove the dish, garnish with the leaf cilantro and finally, add the white pepper to taste. Serve hot.
The secret of this dish is the cooking time. This, of course, will vary with the size of the fish, so adjust accordingly.
As you can easily see, many different dishes pair well with this varietal. Simply put … Riesling & Relax!
Contact Us for More Information on Importing Riesling –
If you are interested in importing Riesling to pair with the dishes at your restaurant, please contact CKJY Exports. We represent several wineries who create beautiful sweet and dry Rieslings for export.
Family, Living in Napa & the Chicago Cubs
Our CKJY Exports team affectionately calls him… “THE Todd”.
Todd has 20+ years of experience regarding everything wine, beer, spirits and the service industry. He is a triple threat because provides keen insights to the changing wants of consumers and working knowledge of fine restaurants. Additionally, Todd brings an in depth understanding of how wineries, breweries, distilleries and distributors operate to our team.
Todd is the team’s “go to alcohol expert.” He pairs his impeccable taste with a friendly outgoing nature and a big smile on his face. Follow Todd’s blog posts to gain a more in depth understanding of American wine, beer and spirits!
Todd’s go to favorites are.. lush Viogniers, delicious IPA’s and his weakness is a rich Cabernet Sauvignon. But what truly excites him is trying new and creative things!