Junk Food & Wine Pairings
My philosophy is that wine makes everything better-including junk food (which is already pretty great, to begin with!). Pairing the right wine with your junk food of choice is a whole other level of treating yourself – think of it like pampering your taste buds!
Similar to our Wine Occasion post, this guide will help you achieve your best snack life, with recommendations for any craving…
Wine & Chocolate
Life can get pretty hectic and stressful with work, relationships, and other adult responsibilities- sometimes, it makes you want to feel like a kid again (you know, carefree- those were the days…). Luckily, chocolate exists. The ultimate junk food and wine pairing. At the same time, I miss a lot of things about being a kid; being an adult has some advantages – namely, wine!
As junk food wine pairings go, It doesn’t get much better than wine and chocolate. But what wine? While it may seem like sweetness overkill, dessert wine makes for a great chocolate pairing. The sweetness of the wine brings a rich complexity to the chocolate.
Tip: Try Banyuls, a French dessert wine with chocolate truffles, and prepare to have your mind blown!
Wine and Cookies
Maybe you are in the mood for cookies instead? There are almost as many types of cookies as wine, but here are a few standouts.
Sugar cookies go exceptionally well with Prosecco – the crisp flavors of Italian bubbly elevate the creamy flavors of the cookie. Likewise, the famous Girl Scout cookie, Thin Mints, is a perfect companion to a Cabernet Franc, whose robust fruit flavors with a slight eucalyptus character amplify the cookie. Lastly, chocolate chip cookies go great with a fruity Cabernet Sauvignon – the vanilla essence adds a yummy richness!
As is often a rule with food pairing, wine and sweets from the same area of the world pair wonderfully. Take, for example, a cannoli. This Italian pastry is best paired with Marsala, a fortified wine from Sicily. The nutty elements of Marsala bring out delicious flavors when paired with the cannoli’s creamy Ricotta filling. France is considered the expert in dessert and wine, so pairing them together is a no-brainer! Airy macarons and fizzy Champagne make for a tasty balance, while Crème Brûlée and Sauternes bring out a deliciously sweet vanilla flavor.
Junk Food Wine Pairing: Savory Snacks
Savory snacks are like wine; delicious and slightly addicting! But should they be paired together? Is this a good junk food wine pairing? Depending on your snack of choice, the right wine can lessen the guilty and amplify the pleasure.
Here are some wine and salty snack all-star pairings:
Popcorn and Chardonnay- It’s movie night, and you want to add some vino with that bowl of popcorn – what do you pick? Of course, the obvious answer is a New World Chardonnay, and in this case, the obvious is right. The malo flavors in the Chard compliment the buttery goodness of the popcorn!
Potato Chips and Champagne – Champagne’s crisp acidity and blissful bubblies play perfectly with the chips’ salt and fat flavors and heighten both flavors.
Cashews and Albariño – Albariño has a zesty acidity with notes of salinity and nuts, bringing the best flavors out of the cashews. This pairing will satisfy any salty craving while also leaving you refreshed!
BBQ Chips and Shiraz – Shiraz, with its flavors of white pepper, dark fruit, and meat, compliments the spice and tang of the chip.
Beef Jerky and Zinfandel – Fruity Zin has a smoky tobacco quality that matches the peppery jerky.
Bruschetta and Rosè – The tomato-based bruschetta and the sweet, slightly acidic Rosè make for the perfect afternoon pick-me-up when paired together.