Foods to pair with chenin blanc
Chenin blanc - what can’t it do? Similar to riesling, you’ll find it made in a whole heap of styles depending on where it hails from and what the winemaker was looking to create.
From dry to sweet, sparkling to still, there’s a chenin for practically every occasion - and that versatility extends to the food it’s good with too.
Here’s five of our go to chenin pairings.
That sweeter prawn meat encased in the savoury, crisp tempura batter is a perfect match for a wine like a chenin, where you want some racy acidity to contrast against the rich coating. Plus, those citrus and stone fruit notes you’ll typically find in dry or off-dry chenin really complement the succulence of the prawns, and take your tempura up a notch.
As chenin ages it’s capable of developing a hazelnut note that matches great with pumpkin, but even in its younger, fresher styles you’ll find heaps of delicious flavour combos going on here. Whether you’ve got a chenin that’s on the racier side in terms of relative acidity, or more fuller fruited, either is capable of comparing or contrasting the rich earthy-creaminess of the risotto and bringing everything together in harmony.
Goat’s cheese and walnut salad
Another earthy-creamy, nutty pairing but for when you’re wanting to eat a little lighter, goat’s cheese and walnut salad is a winner for chenin on those afternoons when you’re out on deck in the sun. Fresh yet earthy, salty and tangy in all the best ways - it’s great with all styles of chenin, sparkling or still, dry or sweet.
Thai green curry
Like riesling, chenin is a great pairing option for when you’re planning for a bit of chilli spice too, and we’re going to suggest it against a classic thai green curry. More austere examples of chenin will have that fresh acidity and vibrant citrus to compliment the coconut cream richness; alternatively more developed styles of chenin will bring those tropical fruit notes into play too. We’ve gone with a green curry here, but chenin’s versatility will take you right through the thai curry rainbow - yellow, red, massaman, penang, you name it.
And look, it’s not just Thai inspired dishes. Chenin is also great with other richly spiced stuff too, and it’s a winner of a pairing for tandoori chicken, however it’s being served - be it stuffed in pita with yoghurt as a lighter bite, or alongside rice and naan as a main event. Sparkling, dry or off-dry, chenin has got those bright fruits that lift the game here, without overpowering anything. Indulgent, but worth it.
As always, it’s a you-do-you thing when it comes to pairing - no gatekeeping here. The joy is always in the experimentation, and finding a new perfect match that you and your loved ones enjoy.
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