The Alsace region in northeastern France hovers near the border of Germany, and is

filled with timbered buildings straight out of fairy tales. The food is robust, the wine
is tart and the beer flows.

Pairing Rule #1
Serve a dry rosé with hors d'oeuvres

Rosé with Creamy Anchoïade

Rosé with Roquefort Gougères

Good rosé combines the fresh acidity and light body of white wines with the fruity character of
reds. This makes it the go-to wine when serving a wide range of hors d'oeuvres, from crudités to

Pairing Rule #2
Serve an unoaked white with anything you can squeeze a lemon or lime on

Albariño with Pan-Glazed Salmon with Oyster Sauce and Basil

Sauvignon Blanc with Smoked Sablefish and Potato Salad with Capers and Onions

White wines such as Sauvignon Blanc, Albariño and Vermentino (typically made in stainless
steel tanks rather than oak barrels) have a bright, citrusy acidity that acts like a zap of lemon or
lime juice to heighten flavors in everything from smoked sablefish to grilled salmon.

Pairing Rule #3
Try low-alcohol wines with spicy foods

Riesling with Pan-Seared Chicken Breasts with Jamaican Curry

Riesling with Shrimp with Green Beans and Toasted Coconut

Alcohol accentuates the oils that make spicy food hot. So when confronted with dishes like a
fiery curried chicken or Thai stir-fry, look for wines that are low in alcohol, such as off-dry
German Rieslings (especially since a touch of sweetness helps counter spiciness, too).

Pairing Rule #4

the astringent compounds in red wines that help give the wine structure. the sauce dictates the pairing choice. are an ideal complement to luxurious meats—making brawny reds like Cabernet Sauvignon and Syrah great matches for braised duck legs or pan-seared sausages. Pairing Rule #7 For desserts. Pairing Rule #5 With lighter meats. in each case. say—isn't the primary flavor.Match rich red meats with tannic reds  Cabernet with Duck Confit with Turnips  Syrah with Sausages with Grapes Tannins. like bison steaks or wild mushrooms. go with a lighter wine  Moscato with Moscato-Roasted Pears and Cider-Poached Apples  Madeira with Dulce de Leche Crispies . Think of pork chops in a delicate white wine sauce versus pork chops in a zesty red wine sauce. making them great partners for equally earthy ingredients. pair the wine with the sauce  Portugese Red with Pork Chops with Shallots  Chardonnay with Chicken Breasts with Leeks and Pine Nuts Often the chief protein in a dish—chicken or pork. Pairing Rule #6 Choose earthy wines with earthy foods  Pinot Noir with Bison Rib Eye Steaks with Roasted Garlic  Nebbiolo with Mushroom-Shallot Ragout Many great pairing combinations happen when wines and foods echo one another. Earthiness is often found in reds such as Pinot Noir (particularly from Burgundy) and Nebbiolo.

but its widespread commercial use began in the mid-1920s. This was a bold move. That is. Alsace has an authentic history of selling some of its most famous wines by their varietal names. with some wonderful viewpoints and walks along the way. through north of Colmar to Mulhouse. an effervescent Moscato d'Asti with roasted pears.When pairing desserts and dessert wines. for consumers of the time had little comprehension of how important the type of grape was to the flavor of the wine. introducing you to the fine foods of the area as well as the best wines. but good fruit Schist – delicate fruit. The earliest documented evidence of this dates back to 1477. Instead. The Wines of Alsace. and this has now become the tradition. it's easy to overwhelm the taste buds with sweetness. Alsace has the ideal medium in which to grow wines for wine production. Meso regions Our three micro-region Guides take you from Strasbourg. Micro regions Although the mountains are very important to the microclimate of Alsace. and added complexity to more delicate ones Gravel – restrained but distinct characteristics Limestone – elegant fruit. long lived Contrary to traditions of either France or Germany. when the Association du Viticulture voted to rid its vineyards of hybrid wines. Like any other good wine region of the world. Tom Stevenson gives a general list of the types of soil found in Alsace and general characteristics that these soils will impart to wines made from grapes grown in them. choose a wine that's a touch lighter and less sweet than the dessert—for instance. explaining the popularity of Bordeaux and Burgundy. one must return to the soil to determine the true nature of Alsace wines. In his book. it has relatively thin topsoil and easily penetrable subsoil that retains the correct amount of moisture. Clay – gives body and structure to the wines. with early appeal Sand – fresh and light body wines. floral aromas Granite – full body. . People put more value on the geographical origin of the wine.

and the wines made from them. although New World producers have since proven themselves far more adept at using it as a marketing tool. inseparable from the history of Alsace. the south-south-east facing exposure of the vineyards and the geological complexity of the soil provide the vines with unique conditions and allow in particular for a slow maturation process that preserves the aromas of the wines Reason The Legend of Nideck In 1816 the legend of Nideck joined the fairy tales of the Brothers Grimm. she walked as far as the Alsace plains and found what she took to be some living toys. a grape was just a grape. firm structure. It was perhaps the first generic marketing initiative of any wine region. Micro climate The cultivation of vines and the culture of wine. Alsace wines are ideal food partners because they combine great aromatic intensity with balanced. This presented the growers of Alsace with a major problem—namely. Bored one day. Alsace Riesling. traditions and heritage. at the top of the varietal hierarchy. which would put these particular grapes. This story inspired the poet Adalbert von Chamisso to write Das Riesenfräulein (The Giant's Daughter).Vineyards in Alsace. Pinot Blanc and Tokay-Pinot Gris can replace Chardonnay or Sauvignon Blanc in virtually any food pairing. as well as exceptionally rich foods. Alsace Gewürztraminer is particularly well suited for exotic. Once returned . The natural barrier of the Vosges Mountains favours a dry micro-climate. are alive and well in these landscapes. such as lobster or foie gras. spicy dishes. because. Thus the world’s first allvarietal wine region was born. The tale relates how the castle was inhabited by a couple of giants and their little daughter. The solution was brilliant and simple: Market the wines by their grape names and then create the not totally fictitious “noble variety” concept. the varietal concept is commonly believed to be a California invention. if anything. how to ask for higher prices for wines made from superior grape varieties—when to most people.

.to the castle. her father explained to her that they were men and that they must be left in their place because they cultivated the land to feed the giants.