Food & Wine 22

Excerpted from The Guardian

Need to find a wine to match the meal you’re about to eat? When you’re at home, it’s easy. Check out what’s in the fridge, or on the rack next to the bread bin. If there is more than one bottle in either place, use your common sense. If you only have the one bottle, your choice becomes simple.

OK, some partnerships are universally acknowledged as perfect. Sauternes and Roquefort cheese is the one that always springs to my mind; for others it is oysters and either Muscadet or Chablis. These are the exceptions. Most food and wine matching resources, in print or online, often present a variety of recommendations for a single dish. Sometimes they’ll include both red and white.

The American sociologist Barry Schwartz has written about how an excess of consumer choice can breed anxiety and uncertainty rather than fulfilment. The world’s-your-oyster approach to food and wine pairing strikes me as a good example of this problem.

This makes me wonder whether they will add anything substantial to the well established food and wine matching resources provided by Fiona Beckett, Berry Bros. & Rudd and Natalie MacLean, and in numerous books by (among others) Hugh Johnson, Oz Clarke, and Jancis Robinson.

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