Wine Pairing Guide

A guide on which wines to enjoy with seafood

Which wines you drink should always be a personal choice but when it comes to seafood there are a few general things that should help you make a good choice. Which wine goes with which seafood will be dependent not only on the type of fish or shellfish but also on how it has been prepared. The wines listed on this page are just suggestions and are by no means the only wines that can be enjoyed with seafood.

 

Red Wine with Seafood?

It used to be that fish was never paired with anything but white wine, however with the introduction of lighter reds it is possible to find a red wine that goes well with some fish dishes, although rarely shellfish. The reason that some red wine is not advisable to drink with fish is because red wines contain tannins which react with the iron in fish causing a metallic taste. Bold red wines will also overpower the delicate taste of shellfish and flatfish like sole and plaice.
For those of you who only drink red or rose wines, we have included a red and rose option. However, as indicated in some of the notes, some seafood is far better paired with a white wine.

A few things to bear in mind:

  • If you have a simple white fish dish or fish that has been prepared in a light stock based sauce it is beneficial to pick a white wine that will not overshadow the delicate flavours
  • If you are eating oily fish like salmon and mackerel it is a good idea to choose a wine with a high acidic content to cut through the oil.
  • If you enjoy red wine then salmon is your best seafood to pick or fish that has been cooked in a rich, tomato based sauce.
  • If you want to drink red wine make sure you pick a light one that has a low tannin content to prevent any metallic taste.

 

White Wines Red Wines Rose Wines
 whitegrape  redwineglass  redgrape
Crab Crab is a delicate meat and it is important to choose a wine that doesn’t overpower the flavour.  For this reason oaked wines are best avoided. White wine is best for crab. Albarino
Chardonnay
Semillon
Viognier
Beaujolais
Chianti
Pinot Noir
Sangiovese
Grenache Rose
Pinot Grigio Rose
Sangiovese Rose
Lobster Another very delicate meat with a subtle flavour – again we would always recommend a white wine or, of course, champagne!Lobster Thermidor goes particularly well with Chardonnay or Viognier Albarino
Chablis
Chardonnay
Viognier
White Graves
Beaujolais Grenache Rose
Pinot Grigio Rose
Mussels If you are having moules marinieres then Muscadet would be the perfect choice as this is the main ingredient of the dish and goes wonderfully with mussels.If your mussels are cooked in a rich tomato based sauce then a light red or rose would also be delicious Albarino
Chenin Blanc
Muscadet
Pinot Grigio
Riesling
Sauvignon Blanc
Semillon
Beaujolais
Pinot Noir
Grenache Rose
Pinot Grigio Rose
Oysters Raw oysters and Chablis or Muscadet go very well together.  If you are going to drink Sauvignon with them you may want to leave off the squirt of lemon. Chablis
Chenin Blanc
Muscadet
Pinot Grigio
Sauvignon Blanc
Beaujolais
Pinot Noir
Grenache Rose
Pinot Grigio Rose
Prawns It depends on how you cook your prawns but simple prawns or prawn linguine is well matched with Albarino Albarino
Chardonnay
Chenin Blanc
White Burgundy
Beaujolais
Chianti
Merlot
Pinot Noir
Sangiovese
Grenache Rose
Pinot Grigio Rose
Sangiovese Rose
Scallops Scallops have a delicate flavour and oaked wines should therefore be avoided.  Sauted scallops go particularly well with Sauvignon Blanc or even Pinot Noir whereas scallops in a creamy sauce are lovely with Chardonnay Albarino
Chardonnay
Riesling
Sauvignon Blanc
Viognier
Beaujolais
Pinot Noir
Grenache Rose
Pinot Grigio Rose
FISH
Cod Simply cooked, white fish is best matched with Pinot Grigio or Sauvignon Blanc Chenin Blanc
Pinot Grigio
Sauvignon Blanc
White Burgundy
Beaujolais
Pinot Noir
Grenache Rose
Pinot Grigio Rose
Haddock Grilled haddock is lovely with any of the white wines listed on the right.  If you are eating smoked haddock then white burgundy is a good choice. Chenin Blanc
Pinot Grigio
Sauvignon Blanc
White Burgundy
Beaujolais
Pinot Noir
Grenache Rose
Pinot Grigio Rose
Herring Sauvignon Blanc is a good choice for herrings as they are oily fish and the wine is fairly acidic. Muscadet
Pinot Grigio
Sancerre
Viognier
Beaujolais
Chianti
Grenache
Pinot Noir
Sangiovese
Grenache Rose
Pinot Grigio Rose
Sangiovese Rose
Mackerel As with herrings, mackerel is oily and benefits from an acidic wine to cut through the oil. Muscadet
Pinot Grigio
Sauvignon Blanc
Viognier
Beaujolais
Chianti
Grenache
Pinot Noir
Sangiovese
Grenache Rose
Pinot Grigio Rose
Sangiovese Rose
Mackerel (smoked) Albarino is a good partner to smoked mackerel. Smoked mackerel is also one of the few fish dishes that go well with an oaked chardonnay Albarino
Chardonnay
Sauvignon Blanc
Beaujolais
Grenache
Pinot Noir
Grenache Rose
Pinot Grigio Rose
Monkfish Monkfish is often served wrapped in proscuitto with Mediterranean flavours.  When cooked like this it is actually best suited to a Beaujolais or Pinot Noir.Cooked simply we would recommend selecting one of the white wines listed. Chenin Blanc
Pinot Grigio
Sauvignon Blanc
White Burgundy
Beaujolais
Pinot Noir
Grenache Rose
Pinot Grigio Rose
Plaice Plaice is a delicate fish and we really wouldn’t recommend drinking red wine with it. Pinot Grigio
Sauvignon Blanc
Semillon
Beaujolais Grenache Rose
Pinot Grigio Rose
Pollack Pollack is a simple white fish that is best enjoyed with a dry white such as Pinot Grigio  Chenin Blanc
Pinot Grigio
Sauvignon Blanc
White Burgundy
Beaujolais
Pinot Noir
Grenache Rose
Pinot Grigio Rose
Salmon Salmon is an oily fish that is best enjoyed with an acidic wine.Salmon is one of the few wines that goes well with red wine and is particularly good with Merlot Chardonnay
Riesling
White Burgundy
Beaujolais
Chianti
Grenache
Merlot
Pinot Noir
Sangiovese
Valpolicella
Grenache Rose
Pinot Grigio Rose
Sangiovese Rose
Sardines Muscadet is a good choice of wine for oily sardines. They are also lovely served with Viognier Muscadet
Pinot Grigio
Viognier
Beaujolais
Grenache
Pinot Noir
Grenache Rose
Pinot Grigio Rose
Sea Bass Sea Bass suits a rounded wine and Chardonnay is a good partner. Chardonnay
Riesling
Sancerre
Sauvignon Blanc
Beaujolais
Grenache
Pinot Noir
Grenache Rose
Pinot Grigio Rose
Sole As with plaice, sole is a delicately flavoured flat fish and we would recommend that a white wine is chosen for the best results. Chablis
Chardonnay
Pinot Grigio
Semillon
White Burgundy
White Graves
Beaujolais Grenache Rose
Pinot Grigio Rose
 MIXED SEAFOOD
 Fish Pie The best wine to drink with fish pie is a smooth dry white and we would recommend an unoaked chardonnay. Chablis
Chardonnay
Chenin Blanc
Beaujolais
Grenache
Pinot Noir
Grenache Rose
Pinot Grigio Rose
 Fish in a rich sauce Fish cooked in rich sauces, especially those with a tomato base can be paired with a lot of different wines.  If you are a red wine lover then this is the best way to cook fish. Chardonnay
White Burgundy
Beaujolais
Chianti
Grenache
Pinot Noir
Sangiovese
Valpolicella
Grenache Rose
Pinot Grigio Rose
Sangiovese Rose
 Fish in light sauce Fish cooked in light stock based sauces has a delicate flavour that would be best paired with a white such as Pinot Grigio Pinot Grigio
Sauvignon Blanc
Beaujolais
Pinot Noir
Grenache Rose
Pinot Grigio Rose
 Fried Fish Fried fish is best served with Pinot Grigio although one of the light reds listed would be enjoyable too. Pinot Grigio Beaujolais
Grenache
Pinot Noir
Grenache Rose
Pinot Grigio Rose
 Paella Paella is a dish from Spain that is full of flavour.  We recommend staying with Spain for the wine choice and would suggest Alberino for a white choice and Rioja for a red choice. Alberino Pinot Noir
Grenache
Rioja
Sangiovese
Valpolicella
Grenache Rose
Pinot Grigio Rose
Sangiovese Rose
 Sushi A plate of sushi has lots of different flavours so the wine you choose needs to be able to compliment these.  White Burgundy works well with sushi as does a Pinot Grigio Rose Sauvignon Blanc
White Burgundy
Beaujolais
Pinot Noir
Pinot Grigio Rose

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