Class Up Your Takeout with Wine

Oh January, probably the most boring month of the year. It’s not January’s fault, really, but the truth is the holidays are over, it’s really cold, the sun doesn’t come out much, and we’re all bored.

January means a lot of couch time, avoiding the gym (even though we swore we would go for our New Year’s Resolution) and ordering a lot of Seamless because it’s too cold to go outside and get the food ourselves.

It doesn’t have to be all bad though! You can turn a boring night in front of the television into a game night with friends, or a romantic date night with that special someone. What’s the trick to classing up a January weekend with takeout? Wine, of course!

Here’s our quick guide to pairing wine with takeout food so you can spice up your winter and make the most of these cold days.

Asian: Whether it’s Chinese, Thai, or Korean, you want something that’s going to compliment the salty, fatty, probably greasy nature of your delicious takeout. One of the best bottles for that is a Riesling, particularly one on the dry side- not so dry that it leaves you feeling parched from salt, but one that provides a crispness and slightly sweet nature to offset any heat that comes from those fantastic Asian spices.

Italian: We all know that pizza is the king of takeout and that usually, it goes with a cheap beer, but pizza can be classed up with a beautiful glass of wine. Stick with the general wine pairing rule of red with red meat and white with white meat (or no meat.) A nice red for your pepperoni is a Cabernet Franc which will pair nicely with the spicy, garlicky flavor of the cured meat, and you could try a dry rosé with the Margherita or white pie, especially if it’s a little bit sparkly.


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Indian: Not all Indian food is created equal, but many dishes are made with cream or cheese which have a dense, fatty nature to them. For this, try a Sauvignon Blanc. Similarly to the relationship between Riesling and Chinese food, you want something bright and tart, with a sharp acidity to cut through the fat. The benefit of a Sauvignon Blanc is the lovely floral notes that can come with it, which accent the common Indian spices, like fennel and garam masala.

Mexican: Let’s start by saying that the best alcohol to pair with Mexican food is obviously tequila, but not all occasions are appropriate for breaking out the bottle of Patron….like a Tuesday night on the couch. So instead, try a Lambrusco, the slightly sparkling red from Italy, or a Sangiovese, a bolder, more intense Italian red. You want something that will accent those fiery spices but will have an earthy balance to cut through the piles of cheese.

Takeout is a simple pleasure that we all enjoy, so next time you’re planning a cozy night at home, use the opportunity to experience a new wine! Who knows, that 10-dollar Chinese food may suddenly taste like a million bucks!



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