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Wine glasses at a fine dining restaurant

Wines to Order with Your Meal at a Fine Dining Restaurant

Whether you are trying to impress your date or simply enjoy your meal, pairing the right wine with your food is an essential component to eating at a fine dining restaurant. Unfortunately, if you are new to wine, the menu can seem a little intimidating. To prepare yourself for your next fine dining restaurant experience, refer to these wine pairing suggestions from Eighteen at the Radisson.

What to Consider

When you find yourself sitting in a fine dining restaurant wondering what wine to order, consider the taste of your meal. Generally, your wine choice should complement the main ingredient of the dish. As a general rule, white wines complement lighter meats, like fish and chicken, and red wines complement darker meats, like steak. Keep this rule in mind, but note that it’s an oversimplification. In most dishes, the meat is not the dominant flavor. Therefore, you’ll want to consider the flavor of sauces, spices, and herbs in addition to the flavor of your meat.

Pairing Guide for Fine Dining Restaurants

When picking a wine for your fine dining restaurant experience, the rules are somewhat flexible. Several different kinds of wine may pair with one kind of meat. Although there are general rules to follow, choosing the right wine really comes down to the individual flavors of the dish. Below are some suggested wine pairings.

White Wines

There are many different varieties of white wines, differing in sweetness, acidity, and flavor profile. Fruitier wines like Sauvignon Blanc and Pinot Grigio pair well with fish, shellfish, and green vegetables. White wines with an oak flavor, like chardonnay, pair best with chicken, cream sauces, and buttery foods. Chardonnay can also be paired with lobster and crab.

Rosé Wines

With its pinkish color, Rosé spans the gap between white and red wines. Rosé typically has a flowery, fruity flavor and pairs well with smoked meat, sausage, strong cheeses, and dishes with bold spices.

Red Wines

Like white wine, there are many varieties of red wine and each one pairs well with different dishes. Pinot Noir, a softer and fruitier wine, pairs well with mild red meats, sausage, and strong cheeses. This is an ideal wine to drink with a gourmet pizza. Darker, dry red wines, like merlot, pair well with meat like pork and veal, and ingredients like mushrooms and onions. Finally, full-bodied red wines, like cabernet sauvignon, pair well with heavy foods like sirloin steak, lamb, and beef tenderloin.

Talk to a Wine Expert

As you can see, wine pairing can get a little complicated. To pick the perfect wine, you need a decent knowledge of cooking ingredients and flavor profiles, but do not worry: the knowledgeable staff at a fine dining restaurant can make expert wine recommendations for any dish. To eat at fine dining restaurant experience in Cincinnati, Ohio, visit Eighteen at the Radisson.

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