The Grapevine

Food & Wine Pairing: Wines for Super Bowl Tailgating at Home

January 31st, 2014

With the Super Bowl upon us, it’s only natural that we turn our attention to wines that work with typical tailgating fare. A tall task, indeed …[level-members]

While some might argue that Buffalo wings are the ultimate in football party foods, there’s no arguing that the Bills haven’t been near the Super Bowl since I had hair. So let’s start with another contender for the crown: nachos.

Tempranillo is our top choice here, and it can be fairly versatile, so it might be a good choice. (Then again, a multi-course, wine-paired tasting menu would be a whole new twist on the usual tailgating gluttony.)

Next up: chili. Heavily seasoned foods need wines that can handle the spice. They can’t be high in alcohol or highly tannic – that just adds to the heat. Côte du Rhône and Shiraz work well here. And if you’re serving up chili dogs, a big, Bordeaux style blend is a surprisingly good accompaniment.

Of course, you may have an easier sell if you stick with whites, which popular opinion have deemed more friendly to foods like these. No point in breaking the bank – that’s just not where this party is headed. Simple, clean, crisp, but with perhaps a bit more fruit than you might otherwise recommend.

And if they’re serving anything fried, suggest having a bottle or two of bubbles on hand. Bubbles can be a real palate cleanser.

Whatever you eat and drink, enjoy the big game!

photo credit: alsis35 (now at ipernity) via photopin cc</a>