Baked in the oven, pan-fried, grilled or smoked—no matter how it’s prepared, salmon is always delicious. But there’s only one thing that can take a salmon dish to the next level: a glass of wine!
Wine pairing with salmon is simple. Because this meaty, fatty fish is more robust than halibut or fillet of tilapia, salmon pairs well with a wider variety of wines. The key is to complement the preparation and seasoning of your fish. Here’s everything you need to know about wine pairing with salmon.
What type of wine goes well with salmon?
White wines are the first port of call for many when fish is on the menu. Something like a baked salmon seasoned with fresh herbs loves a crisp dry white wine like sauvignon blanc or gruner veltliner. If you’re dressing your salmon with butter or cream sauce, opt for a richer white wine like a lightly oaked chardonnay, a marsanne-roussanne blend from the Rhone or a white Rioja.
What about aromatic white wines? Does riesling go with salmon? As a matter of fact, it does. Both riesling and chenin blanc are stunning with salmon seasoned with spices, soy-based marinades and ginger. Stick with vibrant whites and fruity rosés for smoked salmon, although brut bubbly wouldn’t be out of place here, either.
Can’t settle on a white wine you love?
Rosés are outstanding with salmon. Whether it’s smoked, grilled, baked or braised in a marinade, salmon makes an ideal partner for a glass of rosé. The bright red berry notes and mouthwatering acidity in the wine refresh your palate between bites while offering subtle flavours that complement rather than overwhelm the flavours of your food. You can go still or sparkling here. Pick based on the occasion.
Break the rules
When it comes to salmon, feel free to scrap that old rule saying you should never pair fish and red wine. A fatty fish like salmon can hold its own against a wide range of wines, including reds. That said, plan to steer clear of high tannin wines. You won’t want to pour a cabernet sauvignon or shiraz with salmon.
Does pinot noir go with salmon? You bet it does! It’s a killer pairing with salmon whipped up in a cast-iron pan. Sticking to light-bodied reds like pinot, gamay and grenache is always a good idea when you want to serve a red with fish. These wines will also work well with other meaty fish like tuna and swordfish. And if you’re firing up the grill, stay safe and healthy with these grilling guidelines.