Before you make your next dinner reservation, consider this: Are you really sure you know what to order? Whether you’re pairing wine with dinner or steak with wine, menus change all the time. And even if you’re sure, don’t rely on those old favorites for all your food and wine pairings. Before you order wine at a restaurant, read the wine list. Some restaurants list their wines by the glass or the bottle; others list by the type of wine—red, white, sparkling—then give more information.

The best wine and steak pairings are not always obvious. Sure, if you serve a claret with your steak, it’s probably safe to assume that food and wine will complement each other – but which steaks and wines go together? In this handy guide, I put together a list of wines and steaks that go well together, along with a few other notes on how to get the most out of each pairing.

There are no two people who love wine and steak more than Sam and I. We have described our love for both in other blogs before, and they’ve both been very popular. Because we love wine and steak so much, we wanted to make a guide to help people pair both foods.. Read more about best wine for beginners and let us know what you think.

It is nice to taste a wine that transports the senses to the place of origin. This unique taste sensation tells you the story of where the wine was made and the challenges it faced.

This week we taste Greek Assyrtiko, a wine that really tastes like the world it was grown in.

What is a trial match? With 34 wines from 12 countries, you can improve your taste buds every week – the Wine Tasting Challenge.

Assyrtiko is one of the most popular grape varieties in Greece.

On the sun-drenched Greek coast, you need a wine that goes well with seafood of all kinds. And Assyrtiko does the trick. Some would say he was born for this role.

Assyrtiko is a grape that grows on the famous island of Santorini. Right: It’s an island wine. It is said that if you look closely at an Assyrtiko grape, you can see individual bunches of tannin rubbing their backs.

Okay, that’s not true. But it is an impressive grape that makes an impressive wine.

For our purposes, we had no choice but to choose a bottle that came directly from the source: the sandy soil of Santorini itself. We didn’t take the bottle to the beach, but we thought a lot about the waves while we drank.

2019 Ktima Celepos Santorini Assyrtiko

Look at this: Medium straw colour.

Perfumes: Very hot! Lemon, lime, salt marsh, oyster shell, honeysuckle. Very spicy.

It’s all right, it’s all right: The wine has a firm acidity that softens into a sorbet of honey and lemon on the way to the finish. Very hot with alcohol!

Combination with food : I mean, it’s pretty obvious: Shells. Shrimp, oysters, scallops: all served with pasta and buttered and lemony sauces.

What we have learned about Greek assyrtiko

On the sunken volcanic island of Santorini, water is a precious commodity. In fact, most products are delivered by boat. Even tap water has a strong salty taste! How can you expect anything to grow there?

If there’s one thing we learned from this tasting, it’s that grapes really do thrive when punished: by sun, disease or drought. And the Assyrtiko is a good example of this masochistic culture. But this grape exceeds all expectations.

Cooler climates tend to increase the acidity of the grapes, but Assyrtico is valued for its ability to maintain high acidity even in such a warm region. And the lack of rain in Santorini has a lot to do with it.

In an area that only gets half a metre of rain in a good year, the grapes become small and sour and cling to every drop of moisture they can get.

And while it’s tempting to think that the salty taste of assyrtiko comes from the salt water itself, it’s more likely that it comes from the acidity that can cause salt-like wrinkles.

When you taste Assyrtiko, the bright acidity reminds you of sunlight, salt, even the mineral qualities of oyster shells and beach pebbles.

In fact, it’s all about the acid.

Just as your favorite raspberry-flavored wine does not contain raspberries, Greek winemakers do not pour seawater or sand into their fermentation vats.

Last Impressions

When it comes to a wine that takes you to another place, Santorino Assyrtico is perhaps the best example of all. This wine goes well with mussels, feta cheese and dishes with garlic and lemon. But you know what’s even easier?

Combined with the sun and salt air. After all, wine is not necessarily associated with food!

If you want to learn more about Assyrtiko and Greek wine in general, start here.

Which Assyrtiko did you try? Did you go to the beach? Tell us what you think in the comments below.

Frequently Asked Questions

What wine goes best with steak?

Red wine is the most common pairing with steak, but white wine is also a good option.

How do you eat steak and wine?

You drink the wine first, then eat the steak.

How do you pair wine with meat?

The most common pairing for meat is red wine.

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