The Iberian Peninsula gives us endless possibilities to pair its culinary offerings with its excellent wines. I am a fan of most of them both and so in the following lines we will do a review mini pairing guide style going through 5 denominations of origin from the peninsula with their best culinary combinations.
We will start by DOCa Rioja. My proposal is Azpilicueta red wine and potatoes with chorizo stew. Chilies cannot be missed for this combination which for me is irresistible even during the summer. The Azpilicueta is a typical Rioja wine and gives the aroma and exact sweetness to the strong flavors of such a delicious and easy dish with which we match it here today.
Do Rias Baixas: Organistrum, from Bodegas Martin Codax. It is perfect to pair with any delight coming from the sea as everybody was already imagining. For example some grilled clams, a fish stew or a good plate full of cockles. Caution: one bottle is not enough, this wine is highly addictive, like happens with seafood.
DO Jerez: Lustau Solera Reserva, ideal for desserts. This is the best way to put the finishing touch to a great evening. Here everyone can let their sweet tooth instincts take over but I would recommend some ?tocino de cielo? (a heavenly mixture of egg yolk and sugar which cannot be any better).
Portugal is also part of the Iberian Peninsula, so let’s finish this mini food pairing guide with two of their wines.
From DO Douro: Quinta da Soalheira, a wine which mixes three grapes: Touriga Nacional, Touriga Franca and Tinta Roriz from vines over twelve years old. It is an excellent representative of the wines from Douro region. I would combine it with a ?canja a Doentes? (a type of soup which is cooked with chicken meat) or with a ?bacalhoada? (cod and potatoes, not to be confused with the ?feijoada?, a meat dish similar to a stew and therefore much heavier than the other one).
And from DO Porto: Vista Alegre, Bodegas Vallegre, perfect for desserts. I hereby would make a selection tasting including some of the most famous Portuguese sweet treats like candies from Setubal, with that orange taste, Belém pastries and a black bolus portion, chocolate could not miss in this pairing, because I think it’s the flavor that best goes with Porto wine and the one which contributes best to highlight its nuances.