So many restaurants and wine bars now offer a charcuterie or cheese platter, and what could be nicer than a sharing platter of lovely artisan products, with a couple of glasses of wine? But, what to match with those various porky, spicy flavours, alongside hummous, olives, even pate and cheese?
Our advice is to go for red wines that are medium to full-bodied, for example – in Spain, the tempranillo grape is a good option, but go for a Rioja, not something as full-bodied or intense as a Toro or Ribero del Duero, which could overpower the food.
At a recent wine and charcuterie evening hosted here at H2G, we opted for Corral de Castro, mainly Tempranillo but with some Cabernet Sauvignon blended in there. The wine is lovely and fresh, due to it being grown at high altitude in the Alpujarres in Granada, and it worked really well with the charcuterie from Black Pig in Donnybrook and our own local Whole Hoggs charcuterie.
If you fancy something French, then Bordeaux should work well. A blend of Merlot & Cabernet Sauvignon (typical in the Right-Bank area of Bordeaux) should be just the ticket. We used our Chateau Lamartine (Cotes de Castillon, Bordeaux) at our charcuterie evening, and it and the spicy salamis went together beautifully. It also works extremely well with the more mature hard cheeses that can appear on charcuterie platters.
If your wine of the moment is Italian, then we would suggest something from Abruzzo, typically made with the Montepulciano grape, or a similar wine from its neighbour Rosso Piceno. And of course wines made from the Sangiovese grape (such as a Chianti) will also work well. Our friend Luigi Valori makes wonderful Montepulciano d’Abruzzo, so we chose his wines to go with our charcuterie platters.
Whatever you choose, ENJOY!!