When dining out, most people either order drinks they like without thinking about the food they're eating, or they match them only on a basic level – red wine for red meat, white wine with fish or chicken, for example. While this works to a point, you could be missing out on a world of flavour matches that can really bring the dishes to life by adding a wonderful new element.
Next time you go out for a seafood meal, try one of these suggestions instead of picking a house wine without thinking. You're guaranteed a totally different food experience than you're used to.
Light, ice cold lager is almost like the beer equivalent of a white wine, so it makes a solid choice for pairing with seafood. However, for a bit more depth of flavour, a citrusy IPA with hops like Citra or cascade will challenge your taste buds and provide an excellent companion to the time-honoured fish and lemon pairing. The tropical elements to Citra-based beers are particularly good with spicy seafood dishes.
If you really want to get into fruity territory, try a Belgian beer with actual fruit added; orange or grapefruit work wonderfully.
Of course, it doesn't have to be all light, fruity beers. A rich dark stout is a classic companion to fresh oysters, and it can make a great complement for all kinds of shellfish.
So, white wine is what you'd typically expect with seafood, but why not go a bit deeper? Instead of choosing whatever you like the sound of on the wine list, look specifically for a dry riesling, which will lend a pleasantly sharp component to the meal.
For something a bit different, try a red. Shiraz and Merlot are particularly appropriate choices for drinking with fish, especially if it's been cooked over a grill. Or go for a pink wine with your pink fish: a medium-dry rose with salmon is a match made in heaven.
For the truly adventurous, cocktails give you a much bigger range of flavours to play with. Try a classic bloody Mary with prawn cocktails and other cold seafood dishes for a perfect combination.
On a hot summer's day, the prominent lime of a margarita goes with all sorts of seafood dishes, especially those involving flaky fish. For a drink to spend more time over during the evening, a classic dry martini will really make your day, especially if it's made with a particularly juniper-heavy gin.Share