How do you start to understand wine

Crustaceans and wine

There is extensive literature on the subject of “the right wine to go with your meal”, with recommendations that sometimes differ diametrically from one another. Even professionals such as sommeliers in gourmet restaurants often give very different recommendations. Can one deduce from this that it does not matter which wine is drunk with which food? In principle, the very simple rule can apply: "It fits what tastes good". But there are actually a number of dishes that call for a certain type of wine. There are a few basic rules when enjoying several wines. The following explanations should, at best, only be understood as a suggestion, because drinking wine and eating are primarily enjoyment through the sensory organs and not a purely "objective" and measurable scientific matter.

Order of wines

Basically, the order is based on the quality level of the wines, which means you start with simple, light (mostly white) wines and work your way up to the “strongest wine”. Long-lived wines should ideally be ready to drink or, at best, have reached their peak, but this applies in principle to every occasion and not just when eating. You can assume that this is the case in a good restaurant, but at home you have to make the right selection yourself. As a conclusion (final wine), a noble sweet wine - for example a Trockenbeerenauslese - can be suitable. The four basic rules that almost always apply are:

Wine list

When eating in the restaurant, you can get expert advice and suggest the “right wine”. An important criterion for deciding whether a restaurant has the necessary qualifications is the wine list. Because only when there is a larger selection, and not just four or five wines or, in the worst case, only “red wine or white wine”, can one assume that drinking culture is cultivated here. The following treatise on the subject of "the right wine" comes from Frank Bläuel, former president of the "Club der Sommellerie Österreich" and owner of the "Berghotel Tulbingerkogel" in Mauerbach near Vienna (Austria), who has this qualification to the highest degree. After all, the restaurant's extensive wine list includes 1,300 labels. Let's let him have his say:

Season, occasion and mood

Not only the selected dishes influence the harmonizing drinks, but also the season, the time of day, the occasion of the meal, the number of people and of course the willingness to spend money. Last but not least, the mood or state of mind should not be underestimated. Everyone has experienced the phenomenon of holiday wine. What was an extraordinary drinking pleasure in the holiday country with your beloved partner in a romantic restaurant on the beach with soft music with palm trees and sunset and tempted you to take a box of the noble drop with you, now tastes horrible, dreary and empty at home.

At the time of year, imagine a sunny August day, a terrace or a picnic in the countryside; A white wine that is as light as possible, with a delicate interplay of acidity and elegant fruitiness, fits here. The opposite scenario is an evening in Advent, where a rather powerful red wine with aromas such as dried berries, eucalyptus and also slightly sweetness will fit. At the time of day, the rule arises almost automatically that lighter wines are preferable at lunchtime than in the evening. The term "breakfast wine" is used for particularly light, low-alcohol wines, although you don't necessarily have to enjoy a wine for breakfast. In the past, however, wine soups were popular as breakfast in better circles.

The occasion is an important selection criterion. If you see Champagne Cuvée de Prestige as an everyday drink, what do you celebrate a birthday with? The number of dishes on a menu and the number of people at the table make a reasonable price if wine is not available by the glass ...