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What is the Best Wine to Go With Chicken?

Like most foods, chicken tastes best when paired with a bottle of fine wine.

Chicken is one of the less complicated meats to pair with wine - it's incredibly versatile, and there are so many different types of wine that can be paired with it.

To get the perfect pairing, you need to look at how the chicken is cooked, the ingredients that are used, and the sauce it is served in.

We've put together a list of considerations to help you decide which wine you pair with your favourite chicken dishes. 

SOME BASIC CONSIDERATIONS FOR CHOOSING WINE TO PAIR WITH CHICKEN

One of the things to consider when choosing a wine pairings for chicken dishes is the cooking method you choose.

Roasted, grilled, baked, or fried? Chicken can be cooked in a variety of ways, and each method will impact the kind of wine that will pair well with it. For example, the saltiness of fried chicken is ideal for an acidic, sweet wine. A juicy roast chicken is more tailored to a dry white wine, or a full-bodied red.

When pairing wine with chicken you also need to consider the sauces used. A creamy sauce would be ideal paired with a nice Chardonnay, whereas dishes such as sweet and sour chicken might be best complemented by a rosé wine.

If you are cooking spicy chicken dishes, an excellent way to compliment the rich flavours of the spice is through an aromatic white wine which will give it a fruity and light aftertaste that is ideal for spicy dishes.

WHITE WINES

CHARDONNAY

Chardonnay, specifically an unoaked chardonnay, is a much-favoured choice for rich chicken dishes with cream-based sauces.

Try: Jack Duggan Chardonnay to match the creamy sauce with the upfront fruit of this Chardonnay.

SAUVIGNON BLANC

Sauvignon Blanc derives its name from its green-skinned grapes, grown in the Bordeaux region of France. Sauvignon Blanc wines pair perfectly with chicken skewers that have a fruitier seasoning like lime, chilli and ginger.

Try: Tierra Alta Sauvignon Blanc

VIOGNIER

This crisp and flavoursome white offers an aromatic mix of floral citrus tones and apricot notes and pairs excellently with grilled chicken breasts.

Try: Les Gres Viognier

RED WINES

MERLOT

A Merlot is an ideal red for those who enjoy full and fruity flavours and is the perfect companion for any roast chicken dinner on a cold winter's night.

Try: Cortefresca Merlot

PINOT NOIR

Pinot Noirs are very drinkable with a fruit and spice aroma and smooth finish, and due to their lower tannic content and higher acidity, they are perfect for chicken or mushroom meals.

Try: Santa Caroline Pinot Noir

ROSÉ & SPARKLING WINES

GRENACHE ROSÉ

Those who prefer a lighter, fruity wine with refreshing hints of watermelon, cucumber, or lemonade would be wise to opt for a Grenache Rosé.

These light wines are perfectly matched to chicken curries or kebabs.

Try: Percheron Grenache Rose

CAVA

A delicate blend of white fruits, peaches and vanilla which is subtle and sublime.

Cava goes perfectly with light appetisers and can be enjoyed at any point where you want a drink that feels special.

Try: Summum Cava Lacrima Baccus

FAQS

WHAT'S THE BEST WINE FOR A RED WINE SAUCE FOR CHICKEN?

If you're cooking chicken with a red wine-based sauce, the best wines to choose are either a medium-bodied red or a full-bodied red with a sweet touch, such as a Cabernet Franc.

DOES GRILLED CHICKEN PAIR BETTER WITH RED OR WHITE WINE?

Generally, grilled chicken pairs best with an oaked Chardonnay, as the oak flavours will accentuate the BBQ grilled essences of the chicken.

WHAT'S A GREAT AFFORDABLE CABERNET SAUVIGNON?

Cape Heights Cabernet Sauvignon is an excellent robust and full-bodied wine that you can pick up for low prices through trusted retailers.