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Buckhorn Dinners Pair Well With Wines

You may have noticed that our online dinner menu now carries suggestions for wines that will pair especially well with the selections.  Guests routinely ask us for pairing recommendations, so our suggestions will help you take out some of the guesswork.  A member of our team is taking a certificate program at Napa Valley Wine Academy http://www.napavalleywineacademy.com so we all will benefit from what she learns.

The wines offered by the ?Buckhorn Inn are food-friendly.

The aromas of wine are even more diverse than the flavors.

A really good food and wine pairing creates a balance between the flavors of the dish and the characteristics of the wine.  Here are some basic rules of thumb:

  1.  The wine should have about the same  intensity or “weight” as the food.  A robust wine might overwhelm a light dish, while a delicate wine might be overwhelmed by a hearty dish.
  2.   Acidic wines work well with rich dishes.  For example, a zesty Sauvignon Blanc would complement the richness of macaroni in a creamy béchamel sauce.
  3.  Rather than simply matching a wine with the protein in the entrée, match it with the sauce.
  4. Off-dry wines, like a Riesling,  balance spice and are delicious with dishes featuring ginger, chutney, or barbecue sauce.
  5. Wines that may seem lean or tannic when sipped by themselves may taste very different when paired with boldly-flavored food.  Don’t be scared away!

Remember that taste is a subjective sense and what might be a “textbook perfect” pairing for one diner might not be perfect for another.  This subjective nature makes it possible to drink any kind of wine with any kind of food and have an enjoyable experience.  So feel free to experiment!

Taste Profiles for Wines Featured at Buckhorn Inn

In general, if you are looking for a pairing for a light seafood dish, try a light-bodied wine with a higher acidity, like Pinot Grigio.  Chardonnays have more body and are not as acidic and go well with fatty fish or a rich sauce..  Pinot Noir doesn’t have a lot of tannin and is a light-bodied red.  Pair it with dishes featuring mushrooms or truffles.  If you are looking for full-body and high tannin, look for Cabernet Sauvignons.  Cabs go well with steaks and chops as the tannins refresh the palate.  Try a Malbec with sweet, spicy sauces as it is bold enough to hold its own.

Sparkling wines like Champagne, Prosecco, and Cava have a faint touch of sweetness, even when they are dry.  This makes them especially good with salty foods.  

Please let us know some of your favorite food and wine pairings.  Happy sipping!