Perfecto Pairings for Cinco de Mayo

Perfecto Pairings for Cinco de Mayo

cinco_de_mayo_ravago_01What’s a wine lover to do on Cinco de Mayo, when the rest of the world is drinking beer and margaritas? Worry not—there are plenty of Cinco de Mayo pairings that are muy bien.

Generally speaking, rosé is a great option for Tex-Mex food like tacos, tostadas and enchiladas. The light fruitiness of the wine nicely complements the food’s light, fresh flavors. Try:

LOS VASCOS Cabernet Sauvignon Rosé 2013 (Colchagua Valley, Chile) $10
IMPETU Rosé 2011 (Valle de Guadalupe, Mexico) $27

If your tacos have a little spice, like these spice-rubbed chicken tacos, go for off-dry rosé—the slight sweetness in the wine will be a great foil to the heat:

MENAGE A TROIS Rosé 2013 (California) $10

If you’re serving a cream-based dish, like these enchiladas suizas, a white wine will work better, but go with one that will be similarly rich and aromatic. Again, a touch of sweetness in the wine will help if there are spicy chiles in the dish.

LA MIRANDA DE SECASTILLA Garnacha Blanca 2012 (Somontano,Spain) $13
ST. FRANCIS “White Splash” 2012 (California) $12
STERLING Vintner’s Collection Aromatic White 2012 (Central Coast, CA) $14

Ceviche, with its bright, citrusy acidity, is well-matched with a similarly typically-citrusy pinot gris or pinot grigio or a dry riesling:

CHATEAU STE. MICHELLE Pinot Gris 2013 (Columbia Valley, WA) $15
LUCIEN ALBRECHT Riesling “Reserve” 2012 (Alsace,France) $16

Off-dry will be best with ceviche that includes chiles. Try:

THE SEEKER Riesling 2012 (Mosel,Germany) $14

For a dish that’s heavy on red chiles, like chile colorado or a red mole, go with a similarly spicy red like zinfandel. Watch out for a zin that’s too high in alcohol, though—any heat in the food will likely exacerbate the burn of that alcohol. A few favorites:

SALDO Zinfandel 2012 (California) $28
PREDATOR Zinfandel “Old Vine” 2012 (Lodi, CA) $22
TORCICODA Primitivo 2012 (Puglia,Italy) $20

Finish with something dulce—Mexican chocolate brownies paired with:

QUADY WINERY Red Dessert Wine “Batch 88 Starboard” non-vintage (California) $25

What sort of fiesta are you planning for Cinco de Mayo? Let us know below.

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