There is a wide range of possibilities for food pairings with Gewürztraminer. From classic French to the wild and exotic, the gastronomic world is your oyster. Get started with these simple tips for the perfect pairing. <br />
Get Your Gewürz On!
by Matthew Lorman
Gewürztraminer, known for its exotic fruit aromas, is as delicious as it is to say. Say it with me: guh-voorts-trah-mee-ner. This is important to say properly because you’ll be screaming praise for this wine by the end of this article. Great, now that we have that out of the way, let’s begin!
If you enjoy the occasional glass of Moscato or Riesling, chances are you’re going to fall in love with Gewürztraminer. This grape is native to Germany but has found its spiritual home in the vineyards of Alsace, France. Alsatian styles have opulent aromas of lychee, rose, ginger, honey, and apricot. Gewürztraminer is also found throughout other wine regions, most notably in cooler vineyard areas in the U.S. like California, Oregon, Washington State, and New York. These wines are often a tad spicier than their Alsatian counterparts and offer more concentrated spice notes, especially ginger, cinnamon, and allspice.
There is a wide range of possibilities for food pairings with Gewürztraminer. From classic French to the wild and exotic, the gastronomic world is your oyster. Get started with these simple tips for the perfect pairing.
What Grows Together Goes Together
Classic local pairings are always a win. Gewürztraminer and Alsatian food is no exception. Regional specialties in Alsace are a unique mix of French and German cultures, perfect for serving alongside Gewürztraminer. Staples like Muenster cheese, choucroute garnie (wine-braised sauerkraut and pork sausages), and tarte flambé (bacon and onion tart) are regional specialties that can be served where the spice and floral notes in the wine adds a certain zip to these simple and rustic dishes.
Tame the Heat of Szechuan Food
Szechuan dishes are known for their tongue-numbing chili heat--and are not for the faint of heart. Wine is notoriously difficult to pair with spicy dishes, but Gewürztraminer has just what it takes to take on a little heat. Gewürztraminer with a touch of sweetness can tame the heat of adventurous Szechuan dishes. Pair it with dan dan noodles, Kung Pao chicken, or a Szechuan-style hot pot and show that spice who’s boss! It pairs especially well with ginger, adding an extra surprising kick and layer of flavor to your favorite Chinese dishes.
Curry’s Perfect Pairing
Wines made from Gewürztraminer are big on flavor so the food served alongside it should be too. This is why it lends itself so well to the legendary curries of India. Cumin, coriander, cinnamon, clove, and turmeric are all staples in Indian food. Gewurz, which translates to spicy in German, makes these wines a no-brainer to pair with heavily-spiced dishes such as tandoori chicken, jalfrezi, and saag paneer. Look for New World versions of Gewürztraminer from regions like California and Oregon. These wines are a bit spicier than their Alsatian counterparts, and can really hold up to the deep flavors and complexity of curry.
Sweeter styles of Gewürztraminer are an amazing compliment to a simple dessert. Look for wines labeled Vendange Tardive (late harvest) or Selection de Grains Nobles (a dessert-style wine made from botrytized grapes) for something sweet. Something like a baked apple turnover with a scoop of vanilla ice cream comes to mind when I think of the spiced ginger and lychee notes of the wine. The trick here is to not overcomplicate things. Simple desserts allow the wine to shine. Something too sweet and sticky will make the wine fall flat.
What is your wildest food pairing with Gewürztraminer? Take to Instagram and tag us (@DCanterwines) to show off your creativity!