It’s true. Everything that you can think of goes with Rosé. Why? Not a clue. Is it true? No idea. To be honest, this is just me making a declaration that has no credibility behind it other than my own research. Sure, maybe there is a reason why Rosé goes with everything, and maybe some wine expert has already said that this was so (or that it wasn’t!), but again…I did no research, so apologies to those that actually have data on this.
I follow quite a few wine people/wine pairing people on Instagram and Twitter, and am always amazed at their ability to always have a perfect pairing. Lately, I have been seeing lots of them post pairings with Rosé; pairings that I would never have thought of. Beef stew? Chimchurri Steak? Pasta and Bolognese? Well, this led me to my hypothesis that Rosé can go with anything.
To test Rosé’s versatility, I made three, strong flavored meals this week that were to be paired with a Rosé. I almost wanted to find an “eh” wine, just in case my hypothesis was wrong. Why waste a good bottle? I wrote a post a while back about my Top 5 Rosés, and admitted that most of the time, I don’t like Rosé. So many of them are too light and have little flavor, and some are too sweet. However, when I find one that I like, I don’t just like it, I love it.
Take for example, 2016 Early Mountain Vineyard’s Rosé. I’m in love with this stuff. This Rosé has some sweeter flavors (peach, strawberry, honeysuckle) and floral flavors (violet, tea). It has a crisp acidity that makes it well balanced and dry. I was depressed when I went to visit their vineyard back in February, only to arrive on the day that their last bottle of the 2015 ran out. However, patience comes to those who wait, and I was able to finally get some of their 2016 back in April! Since I had a bottle of this in my fridge, ready to go, I decided to take a risk, and pair my wonderfully wonderful Early Mountain Rosé with my meals. At least if my hypothesis didn’t pan out, I would have a great wine to drink on its own!
The first pairing was Skinnytaste’s Enchilada Chicken Roll-Ups. Rather than use a tortilla as the holder of the ingredients, this recipe rolls the cheese and chili peppers in the chicken, followed pouring a generous helping of homemade enchilada sauce over it. It is topped off by loads of cheesy goodness and cilantro. Other than trying to roll everything up in a thin slice of chicken, this was one of those wonderful recipes where you do very little and then let it cook in the oven. Helpful tip, spear a toothpick in the chicken to hold it in a roll form.
I love spicy food, and decided to make this recipe extra spicy. I used extra chilis in adobo sauce and a mix of Serrano, habanero, and jalapeño peppers. Surely, the spiciness and creaminess of the cheese and avocado would overpower the Rosé, wouldn’t it? Not so! I actually found that the floral and tea flavors of the wine toned down the spiciness, and the avocado and cheese from the dish brought out the fruity flavors of the wine! I was quite surprised that my Rosé didn’t taste like water, and was happy that most of the flavors from the wine came though! 4 grapes!
The second pairing of the week was Ambitious Kitchen’s Sweet and Spicy BBQ Bacon Hawaiian Turkey Burger. OMG I think I died. This meal had so many flavors going on. Barbecue sauce, pineapple, bacon, pepper jack cheese. This meal was amazing….absolutely incredible! Mr. Grape Pairings and I closed our eyes as we were eating, a sign of total enjoyment. After the bites in our mouthes were consumed, we took a sip of the wonderful Rosé…and were sadly underwhelmed. The wine’s floral flavors were heightened, but all of the fruity notes were washed out by the vinegar of the barbecue sauce. If I had not intended to pair these two together, they would have worked just fine. However, I was trying to be purposeful in the pairing, and it didn’t wow either one of us. Therefore, I give it only 3 grapes.
The last meal of the week was Baked Lentil and Spinach Stuffed Shells, a recipe from Whole Foods. I have mentioned before how much I love lentils and Rosé (like here and here), so I was excited about how this pairing was going to turn out. This was the most complicated recipe of the week, as each jumbo shell had to be individually filled with a lentil/ricotta mixture. After being doused with homemade tomato sauce and baked in the oven for 30 minutes, the shells were ready. Just as I had hoped, the pairing was a success! All of the acidity from the tomato sauce, ricotta, and wine blended together nicely. The savory lentils and the fruit flavors of the Rosé were also equally complemented. I was very pleased 🙂 4 grapes
So what was the conclusion to my hypothesis? So far, I have yet to find a “bad” Rosé pairing. Some are better than others, but based on my “extensive” research, Rosé can pair with basically anything. So imbibe without fear, as that Rosé that you are about to drink will go nicely with whatever you eat with it. Cheers, and Bon Appétit!