Wine & Dine – Types of wines with the desired food paired up.

It is still July and its wine and whiskey month. And today, we get to explore the types of wines and meals to pair it with. I mostly highlighted the parts that I thought were important and fun. I hope you enjoy it.

The first good step to knowing the world of wine is getting to know the types of wine. It is not as simple as using your eye to just classify the color. Wine has an immense depth and each wine type actually has its own character and identity which according to grape varieties and wine region and also including tannin level, aroma and bouquet, sweet, and alcohol level which all affect the flavors in some way.
Although therr are 5 main types of wine that is; Red, White, Rose, Sweet or Dessert and Sparkling. Lets dig in.

White wine

It is a still wine produced from white and occasionally black grapes. They tend to be more tart and refreshing than reds, with aromatic notes like flowers, citrus, and orchard fruits. White wines are usually lighter in body and in alcohol. Flavors in white wines span from light to rich.

White wine isn’t just made from white grapes, but they are also got from either red or black grapes. Extracting the red pigments away and fully utilizing the grape juice only is the way to make white wine. The flavor character of white wine includes bright, savory, and creamy based on the inputs. Recommended varieties for wine beginners are Chardonnay, Riesling, Sauvignon Blanc and Moscato.

Red wines

This is a still wine made with black grapes. Red wines are defined by their beautiful dark fruit flavors and tannins that make them a great match for food. The color ranges from violet for young wines to brick red for old wines. Oak aging plays a part in many red wines. ( the red wines tend to soak up the colour of the oak wood from which the barrels are made from during fermentation process ). Red wines range from light to bold.

Production of red wine is quite similar to making white wine but only with the addition of grape skin. The grape pip and seed are incorporated into the fermentation process. High temperatures during fermentation are needed so as to extract color. The tannin, aroma and flavors with different levels of concentration are determined by duration of fermentation.
Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Pinot Noir, and Zinfandel can also be a good choice to start with for wine beginners.

Rose wines

This is a still wine got from black grapes produced by removing the skins before they stain the wine deep red. Rosé is can also be made by blending red and white wine together. Both dry and sweet tastes of rosé are common.

Rose wine with a pink rose color is made from red or black grape. It has a short fermentation time of about 12-36 hours only. However, another way of making this Rose is by just straight away blending // mixing the red wine and the white wine together. The flavor of this wine ranges from dry to sweet and comes with a pale to dark pink color and a lower level of tannin.

Dessert // sweet wine

There is no constant definition for Dessert or Sweet wine. The name is no mystery either, it comes with the occasion of serving it with desserts after the meal. Sweet white wine serves an aperitif, before a meal and the sweet red wine rinses their palate after. Sweet wine can be categorized into Port, Tawny, or Sherry and so on.

Sparkling wine

This style of winemaking involves a secondary fermentation that makes bubbles! Sparkling wine can be red, white, or rosé and ranges from lean and dry, to rich and sweet.

Sparkling wine the symbol of a celebration. The sparkling bubbles from carbon dioxide (CO2) occur naturally or specifically are added during the fermentation process.
Sparkling wine can be categorized further by region, for example; Cava in Spain, Asti or Prosecco from Italy and Champagne from the Champagne region in France.


Now that we are well – acquainted with the types of wine, let us dig in with the food pairing. In Uganda, you can explore and buy premium red wines by region: France, Chile, Argentina, Spain, Australia,Italy, New Zealand, USA, South Africa and have them delivered. Other types of wine are also accessible nationwide.

Red wine

Food Pairing: If it is a light-bodied red wine like Pinot Noir – “Pee-no Nwar”, Taste – rich red fruited (cherry, cranberry) and red floral (rose) with notes of beet and mushroom. It goes well with grilled vegetables, chicken, Pork, Veal, Cured meat, duck, French, German cream sauces, soft cheeses.

Switch up from Pinot Noir with Gamay, Shiava

A medium-bodied to full-bodied like Zinfadel “Zin-fan-dell”. Taste – broad exotic array of fruits nectarine, the red (raspberry, sour cherry), the blue (plum, blueberry), the black (blackberry, boysenberry), sweet tobacco, Asian 5 spice powder. It can get along well with meat dishes such as steaks, hamburgers or smoked meat, Lamb, Beef, Barbeque, Italian, American, Chinese, Thai, Indian, full flavored meals and cheeses, might work well with the Asian dishes ( but that’s another story ).

You can switch up from Zinfadel with; Carignan, Grenache

A full bodied red wine like Cabernet Sauvignon -“Kab-er-nay Saw-vin-yawn”, Syrah/Shiraz – “Sear-ah”. Taste – Black Cherry, Black Currant, Baking spices and Cedar for Cabernet Sauvignon, Blueberry, Plum, Tobacco, Cured meat, Black Pepper- taste for Syrah.

You can switch Cabernet Sauvignon with; Merlot, Carmenere

You can switch Syrah with; Malbec, Pinotage

Recommended Wine Glass: Aged red wine should be served in a big bowl glass to let the wine breathe (oxidation process) better.

White wine

Food Pairing: Creamy cheese (Soft Cheese), white bread, meat, fish, seafood or salads
Recommended Wine Glass: We recommend a tall suitable size wine glass For the outstanding aroma and full-bodied white wine, try to pair with a shorter glass to help spread the fragrance and flavor of full-bodied white wine.

Sweet or dessert wine

Food Pairing: The dessert aside, the wine can also be paired perfectly with smoked meat and soft cheese.

Recommended Wine Glass: It is usually served in a shot, small glass such as a Liqueur glass.

Sparkling wine

Food Pairing: If you are holding a party, try pairing the sparkling wine with salad, cheese, fish, or bread.

Recommended Wine Glass: An elegant tall glass helps retain temperature and bubbles.

Rose wines

Food pairings; Chicken or niçoise, salad, Salmon, spinach, Duck, Lamb served pink, Veggie skewers on the barbecue,Soft cheeses. Also you can have it poured out for you on a saturday afternoin as you rest and observe the world around you.

Well, there you have it. I am exhausted but I loved writing this blog. Hope you enjoyed reading it. Aurevoir connoisseur!


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