Wine and junk food
By Marco Giovanetti
Everyone with a minimal degree of culinary knowledge knows generally what kinds of wine to drink with beef, chicken, or seafood. But what about food items that don’t find their way onto the general rules of wine pairing ? There’s no reason in the world why whole classes of food should be destined to go unpaired! True wine lovers drink wine to accompany and complement every meal, even those that often go unnoticed by the culinary world at large: what some minds would refer to as “junk” “food.”
Much like a real sharp cheddar chunk, the salt and artificial cheese powder on this popular snack demand a strong, full-bodied wine. Try a robust Cabernet or Merlot. If you’re particularly adventurous, put both the Cheeto and the wine in your mouth at once and enjoy the sensation of the snack deflating into a cheesy, tannic pit
Another very popular snack, but with a far different flavor profile. The marshmallow distinctive taste can easily be stifled by too strong a wine. Try an impertinent, sassy dry white to balance out the candy sweetness, like an inoffensive Pinot Grigio or a Riesling.
Nothing else should ever accompany this candy except for Dom Perignon champagne. Smarties inventor Hay Barnes said as much in his last will and testament, where he explained that Smarties were chemically engineered to pair perfectly with this type of expensive champagne. According to him, if you drink any other wine with Smarties, the combination will create a powerful chemical that will slowly seep through your stomach and into your reproductive organs. This chemical will cause all children born of your loins subsequently to unavoidably show up at parties too early. Don’t have the cash to drink dom dom, a good sparkling wine will do. Think Prosecco, Cava or Cremant de Jura.
Cheap Foil-Wrapped Milk Chocolates
If the chocolates are plain, try a boring Syrah available ( However, if you find yourself aroused by the red AT ALL, DO NOT PAIR IT with the chocolates–you won’t like the outcome). If they have crispies, nuts, or caramel inside, go for an American or Australian Pinot Noir.
Gummi Bears or Worms
These popular treats often need a citrusy kick to keep them from getting bland. Look for a brassy, super-oaky (we’re talking woodchips in the glass here) Chardonnay. For a fun twist, add in some chocolate pudding, sprinkle crushed Oreos on top, and stick your gummy worms right into the glass; you now have what’s known as a “Midlife Crisis” or “The Wino’s paradise Delight!
There is nothing wrong in my mind to have a big mac with a glass of Grenache or a Mac chicken with a glass of chardonnay. I will likely choose an inexpensive gamay or malbec to choose with the different burgers at the menu. You want something that is fruity and with a good acidity. This will counterbalance the fattiness of the food. If you want to drink a white, I will choose again a sparkling wine or a white from chenin blanc or Torrontes.
I hope this small guide help for your next off track wine pairings. See you, next week for more wine adventures.
Wines of the week:
Wine from Quebec, Lanoraie
On the nose, aromas of moka, cacao, dark cherries with blueberry syrup and nuances of black earth. In the mouth, medium body with soft and velvety tannis and a good acidity. Retronasal reminds me of slight vegetal notes with barnyard nuances. Finales is reminiscent of ripe raspberries. Very well made Quebec wine with a solid price. $15 at the winery. 90\100. QPR.
Errazuriz Wild Ferment Chardonnay 2012. Casablanca, Chile. $21.25. SAQ Code: 00860213.
Classic aromas of ripe pears, oak spice, vanilla. In the mouth, medium body, round with an excellent acidity. Retronasal reminding me of tropical fruits. Good finish with a nice length. 93\100.
Clas Hic 2012
Cotes du Rhone 2012
Raisonnance Private Importation ( Florian, 514-262-3363)
On the nose, multiple aromas that remind me of dry prunes, cherries, red apple must, oregano, rosemary with plums and hints of violets. In the mouth, medium to full body with a good acidity. Retronasal flavors remind me of minerals, brown earth with spices such as cloves, nutmeg and cinnamon. Loved the thickness of the wine and the round texture in my mouth. Good tannic charge and clean finale that invites you to drink more. A classic. 95\100