Aromas and flavors are important in food and wine pairings, but texture can also play a role, as it does with these three wines — a sparkler from France, a rosé from Spain and a red from Italy. Tannin, body, acidity and effervesce all come into play in one way or another.
Make this: Linguine with Prosciutto, Radicchio and Arugula
Cook 8 ounces linguine in a large pot of well-salted boiling water until al dente; drain. Meanwhile, heat 1 tablespoon olive oil in a skillet over medium-high heat. Add 1 ounce prosciutto, cut into 1/4-inch thick lardons; cook until fat renders a bit, 5 minutes. Add 1 onion, chopped, 1 clove garlic, minced, and salt to taste. Cook until onion softens, 5 minutes. Stir in 1/2 cup white wine, 4 canned plum tomatoes, chopped, and 1 head radicchio, cut into 1/4-inch ribbons. Cover; simmer until radicchio wilts, 10 minutes. Stir pasta into sauce. Serve sprinkled with baby arugula. Makes: 2 servings
Recipe by Joe Gray
Pairings by sommelier Rachael Lowe, of Spiaggia, as told to Michael Austin:
Tissot Cremant du Jura Extra Brut, Jura, France: Made from pinot noir and chardonnay, this nonvintage sparkling wine is produced in the traditional method, offering aromas of yellow apple, pear, brioche, toasted almond and spice. The wine’s fine bubbles and racy acidity will pair well with the vegetables and also the salty meat.
2016 Hacienda Lopez de Haro Rosado, Rioja, Spain: A 50/50 blend of garnacha and tempranillo from vines 50 to 90 years old, this wine has aromas of tangerine, raspberry and strawberry, with a hint of dried herbs and white pepper. Those notes will complement the savory onion and prosciutto, while the texture will harmonize with the tomato.
2014 Podere La Vigna Rosso di Montalcino, Tuscany, Italy: This sangiovese-based wine has bright notes of red plum, red currants and raspberry, plus a touch of licorice, sage and smoke, and a hint of florality. All of it is balanced by bright acidity and tannin, which will be perfect matches for the tomato and prosciutto, respectively.
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