Whether you're a wine enthusiast or just someone finding ways to relax after a hectic work week, pairing the right wine with your favourite food can benefit you in many ways. This fancy trend can intensify the food and wine flavours, giving you a more enjoyable and satisfying dining experience. It can also help balance your dish's tastes, textures, and aromas, creating a balanced and well-rounded meal. 

As you select the best choices for supper, you may ask yourself what are the best pairings. Although there are no rules for this intricate process, you should follow some general guidelines to prevent unfavourable combinations and unpleasant lingering tastes.

If you want to treat yourself to a delicious and pleasant dinner, this article will explain the characteristics that can clash with food and wine and vice versa. We'll also enumerate the two rules of thumb.

Food Characteristics That Can Compliment or Clash with Wine

Nobody deserves to have a ruined dinner due to wine. Sadly, that happens when you don't match it with the right food characteristics. Here are the traits that can complement or clash with your favourite beverage. 

1. Acidic and Salty Food

The acidity and saltiness in food can complement the wine's flavours. These characteristics can enhance the fruity aromas of the wine, resulting in a delightful combination, even if the beverage's quality isn't exceptional.

2. Bitter and Green-like Aromas

Bitterness and green flavours in food can make finding a wine that complements them challenging. Asparagus and artichoke, for example, have an intense bitter aftertaste. A dish's overall balance of acidity, saltiness, and bitterness determines the success of wine pairing.

What Wine Characteristics Can Compliment or Clash with Wine?

The wine also possesses acidity, bitterness, and saltiness, besides sweetness and umami. The sourness and salinity in the wine enhance its fruity aromas when tasted, making it suitable for pairing with various foods. For instance, a crisp and highly acidic wine like Pinot Grigio or Sauvignon Blanc will have intense citrus flavours, hints of fresh grass, and slightly ripe stone fruits, like a white peach. 

Likewise, bitterness in alcoholic beverages can cause similar issues, as mentioned earlier, usually due to phenolics, particularly tannins. Therefore, you can generally find this flavour in red and white wines made from a short period of skin contact during production.

2 Rules to Know in Pairing Food and Wine

There's no right or wrong answer to pairing food and wine. However, this section enumerates two rules enthusiasts must follow to create a pleasant mealtime experience. 

1. Consistency

Consistency is crucial when pairing certain types of food, especially desserts and sweet foods. The sweetness factor is dominant in these pairings, so you must match a sugary food with a sweet wine that complements and enhances each other's flavours.

For example, you can pair sweet pies with the sparkling Moscato d'Asti from Italy, one of the most fascinating sweet sparkling wines globally. The beverage's sweetness effortlessly harmonises with the dessert's sweetness, while the wine's acidity refreshes the palate, preparing it for the next delectable bite.

2. Contrast

The second rule focuses on contrasting flavours. It balances the food's main characteristics and the wine's key features. For instance, fried seafood and shrimp go well with a white wine from a cold region with high acidity. The drink's acidity helps balance the fried seafood's richness, leaving a clean and refreshing taste in the mouth. 

Also, grilled beef goes well with a robust red wine like Cabernet Sauvignon, while pasta with Bolognese sauce pairs nicely with a fresh and fruity Pinot Noir.


Your food and wine pairings can make or break a memorable dining experience. You can enjoy the perfect meal while indulging in this alcoholic drink by considering the items' flavours and aromas and purchasing from a reputable winery. 

If you're looking for artisan, boutique Australian wines, visit Millon Wines! Our family-owned South Australian winery carefully cultivates and crafts exceptional wines that enhance your dining experiences and delight your taste buds. Shop our products now!