Hello, you who love red wines will love our pairing tips. So let’s talk a little about the history of some of the main red grapes appreciated in Brazil. We will also talk about the best dishes to pair with each of them.
However, our intention is only to help those interested to better understand the subject, to taste the best of each red wine, and not to impose rules on this, since everyone has their own taste.
We will discuss the following red grapes: Cabernet Sauvignon, Malbec, Merlot, Pinot Noir and Tempranillo. Come on, grab your glass and come with us!
Cabernet Sauvignon the Queen of Red Wines
To begin our red wine tips and pairings, the first grape could not be any other. Considered the Queen of red grapes, Cabernet Sauvignon is one of the most cultivated grapes in the world.
However, this grape has its origins in the emblematic French region of Bordeaux, famously known as the capital of wine. This grape is the result of crossing two other grapes, Cabernet Franc and Sauvignon Blanc.
The wines produced with this grape have characteristics of medium to high intensity, a balanced acidity and firm tannins. Its most common aromas are reminiscent of cherries and spices, in the case of young wines that are more fruity.
However, already in wines aged in oak barrels, the wines become more potent and present notes such as chocolate, vanilla and plum. Therefore, to harmonize with a Cabernet Sauvignon, the ideal are dishes based on beef, lamb, yellow cheeses and even desserts with dark chocolate.
The Merlot grape also originated in France. However, it is a very flexible red grape that adapts well to many types of soil. Its name is due to the similarity of the down of the Merle bird (Blackbird) with its mature curls.
The wines made from this grape are very pleasant, with a very fruity flavor and despite a very present acidity, its tannins are very soft. Its aromas, however, are usually reminiscent of red and black fruits, but when aged in barrels, they present aromas of cinnamon and coffee.
So, because it is a light and versatile grape, this is reflected in the pairing as well. But as a tip, opt for low-fat dishes like white meat, pasta and lightly seasoned risotto. Plant-based dishes also go well.
Malbec is a grape variety that produces great red and rosé wines. However, today we are only going to talk about the reds. The origin of this grape, by the way, like the vast majority of grapes, is also French, from the southwest region. However, Malbec found its greatest expressiveness in Argentina, Argentine Malbecs are appreciated all over the world.
The wines made with this grape have a very intense palate, high acidity and firm tannins, which makes Malbecs very potent. Its aromas are reminiscent of fresh black fruits, red fruits and also touches of pepper.
To achieve a good pairing with Malbec, you should choose very fatty dishes with an intense flavor. Therefore, meats such as sirloin steak and chorizo steak made on the barbecue are perfect with this wine. However, mature cheeses and well-seasoned pasta are also great combinations.
To talk about this grape, first comes a cliché; its origin, which is also in France. However, this grape originated in the Burgundy region more than two thousand years ago and even today this French region is the largest producer of this variety.
Pinot Noir is such a versatile grape that it is capable of producing great red, rosé, white and sparkling wines. In the case of reds, this variety will produce lighter, medium-bodied wines that are very easy to drink and quite elegant. Its aromas are of spices and red fruits such as cherry, strawberry and raspberry.
On the palate, there are few tannins and medium or high acidity. Therefore, to harmonize with a Pinot Noir you will not have difficulties. Dishes such as risottos, white or red grilled meats, pizzas, pasta and bruschetta will go great together.
A classic and emblematic grape in Spain, especially in the regions of Rioja and Navarra, it arrived on Spanish soil almost a thousand years before Christ. Tempranillo, comes from “temprano” (early in Spanish), as this grape ripens earlier than the others.
Brought to Spain by the Phoenicians, who cultivated it in Lebanon, this variety, however, is also called Tinta Roriz or Aragonês in certain regions of Portugal where it is also widely cultivated.
The red wines from this grape, which also makes great rosés, have aromas of leather and red fruits such as cherries and have a medium to full body. To harmonize with this wonderful wine, in addition to, of course, a traditional Spanish Iberian jamón, you can opt for pizzas, pasta with tomato sauce, grilled meats and a Tempranillo also goes very well with typical Mexican food.
You’ve seen here a brief history of some grapes that produce great red wines and their pairings. We are only talking about those that are among the most consumed by Brazilians. However, there are many other grapes that make great red wines.
So if you liked this article and want to know more about other grapes, just ask here in the comments and know that we are already working on it, and soon we will also have articles on white, rosé and sparkling wines. Stand by!