Spring has finally sprung and we can’t wait to indulge in all of the crisp, refreshing flavors that the season has to offer. From fresh produce and goat cheese, to savory meats and crunchy salads, we’ve rounded up five of our favorite dishes to celebrate the arrival of spring, each one paired with the perfect bottle of wine to enjoy alongside of it. Grab a few bottles, hit the farmers market, and get ready to sip in season!
Lamb & Syrah
No matter what form of lamb is on the menu (braised, rack of lamb, or lamb shanks), there’s no doubt about it-- Syrah should be in your glass. The dark fruit, black pepper, and earthy spice notes of the wine pair perfectly with the juicy, pepper-driven flavors of the meat, creating the quintessential food and wine pairing for spring. The Northern Rhone is usually our go-to region for savory Syrah, though other appellations within the region, as well as the Languedoc and California (specifically Ballard Canyon), are also cranking out some great options!
Baked Ham & Riesling
White wine and meat? You bet. When it comes to glazed ham, look no further than a bottle of Kabinett Riesling from Germany. Off-dry bottles (we love Peter Lauer’s ‘Barrel X’ expression!) gorgeously complement the sweet yet savory flavors of the meat, thanks to the wine’s ideal amounts of residual sugar and lightning-like acidity. We’ve said it before and we’ll say it again-- for ultimate food and wine pairing versatility, Riesling is one of the best go-to options.
Asparagus & Gruner Veltliner
Forget what you’ve heard about veggies being impossible to pair with wine. For all things green, Gruner Veltliner is your best friend. The wine’s zesty notes of citrus, white pepper, and salt beautifully complement the bitter, 'hard-to-pair' notes within all of our favorite veggies. Whether grilled, oven-roasted, or simply boiled, serve a crisp glass of Gruner alongside your seasonal asparagus for a refreshingly satisfying pairing.
Strawberry Spinach Salad & Rosé
There’s really nothing we love more than fresh produce paired with thirst-quenching rosé. Starting a meal with crunchy greens and juicy strawberries tossed in an olive-oil based vinaigrette is a great way to rev up your appetite-- and what better way to whet your palate than with a savory glass of rosé? Rosé’s high-acidity and juicy red fruit flavors perfectly pair with the strawberries within the salad, as well as other seasonal ingredients you may decide throw in (think feta cheese or nuts.) Plus, is there anything you’d rather be drinking in early spring than a zesty, lip-puckering glass of rosé?
Goat Cheese Tartlets & Sauvignon Blanc
Goat cheese and Sauvignon Blanc is one of the classic pairings of the wine world. The wine’s high acidity, flinty flavors, and notes of zesty citrus amplify the earthy, savory notes within the cheese, creating an out-of-this-world explosion of flavor in your mouth. Couple that with some pastry dough, caramelized onions, and an array of seasonal herbs, and you’ve got yourself what may just be the best food and wine pairing of the season! For high-quality SB, Sancerre is always a safe bet, though looking to other Loire Valley regions will also provide some delicious, more affordable options.