Burgers & Wine

When pairing with a traditional burger, it’s all about the toppings and condiments that you choose. But in general, you need a wine with enough body to stand up to the meat. The best choices are a Cabernet Sauvignon, Sangiovese, Carmenere, Primitivo, Aglianico, Shiraz, Malbec or a Zinfandel, because they have the structure and tannins that are well matched with beef. If you prefer white wines, an oaked Chardonnay would work because the wood influence gives the wine extra body to handle the meat.

Lamb burgers are a little lighter than the typical beef burger, so naturally, you’ll want to pair it with a light-bodied red wine such as Grenache, Nero d`Avola, or a Frappato. For a white wine choice, Riesling that is either dry or has just a touch of sweet is a great match to a lamb burger especially if there is any Mediterranean influence in the seasonings.

The trick when pairing with these lower-fat, milder burgers is to choose a wine that’s light bodied but not delicate. That way, the wine will stand up to bold toppings, but won’t overpower a simple patty. Pinot Grigio, Sauvignon Blanc, Grillo, Arneis, Chenin Blanc, and also Pinot Noir are ideal wines.

Pinot Noir and salmon are a classic pairing for good reason: they are delicious together! Because a salmon burger is a little heartier than a cooked piece of salmon, you can also try it with a Merlot which has a little more body and intensity than a Pinot Noir. However, if you want to pair it with a white wine, the acidity in a Sauvignon Blanc matches well with the fish just like how a squeeze of lemon works on a fish fillet.

Veggie burgers can vary widely in terms of their flavors and richness, so it’s hard to just pick a couple specific varieties that will match. One great option is a sweet red that is low in tannins, like a Frappato, Cabernet Franc, Valpolicella, Barbera, or a Cinsault. For white, a Viognier would pair nicely especially if there is a little spice or a sweetness in the burger. Rosé is also a great match for a veggie burger, and we are not just saying that because we love rosé (even though we do!).

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