The Grapevine

Food & Wine Pairings – Summer Comfort Foods

June 7th, 2013

With a soggy day ahead and not much better for the weekend for those parts of the country feeling the effects of tropical storm Andrea, comfort food is once again on tap. But as disappointing as the weather is, it ain’t winter out there. So what qualifies as comfort food, and what should we pair with it? [level-members]

How about a “classic lasagna” or fried catfish or, for a less traditional take, feta-stuffed tomatoes.

With the lasagna, take your pick of the range of Italian wines from a rustic Aglianico (with a little aging to bring it around) to elegant Brunellos and everything in between. Our personal favorite, though is Barbera, once described to us as “the acid king of Italy.” It’s very food friendly.

For that catfish … bubbles! You could go with a still white, too, as long as you go with something bright and crisp in both cases. It’s the high-acid wines that will do best here. Take it easy on the malt vinegar, though.

And for feta-stuffed tomatoes, you could go just about anywhere. Again, a bright, crisp, low-alcohol white would be a great choice, but a light-bodied, fruity red could work, too. And I wouldn’t be afraid to either chill that light-bodied red down, or drink it right out of the cellar while it was still quite cool.