By definition, a pairing combines in sets of two persons or things that are mutually beneficial. There have been great pairings throughout history: Astaire and Rogers, bacon and eggs, Funk and Wagnalls, gin and tonic, Johnson & Johnson, the Lady and the Tramp, the Lone Ranger and Tonto, the Wright Brothers, chips and salsa , Abbott and Costello, the twin cities, Abercrombie & Fitch, Currier & Ives, Unitas and Berry, Yin and Yang, Watson and Crick, Tweedledee and Tweedledum, and bricks and mortar.
With this in mind, I’d like to talk about wine and food pairing, which is the process of matching great food dishes with great wine. The main concept behind pairings is that certain elements (such as texture and flavor) in both food and wine react differently to each other, and finding the right combination of these elements will make the entire dining experience more enjoyable. However, taste and enjoyment are subjective. What may be a “textbook perfect” pairing for one taster could be less enjoyable for another.
We can create a pairing in a variety of ways. We can select a favorite wine, and then seek out a food that matches well with the wine. Or we can select a recipe and then research to see what wine will complement the meal. Dorothy and I usually do the latter. We will decide what we want to prepare, and then we will go to the basement and select a wine. We know we are certainly not as sophisticated as some, but we have adopted some guidelines to help us in our selection.