If there’s one thing we love more than wine it’s…well…swine… of the salted, cured and smoked variety. Here we take a look at what wines match with bacon.
They say that in life there are three truths: birth, death and taxes. But, of course, there is also an almost universally acknowledged fourth truth – there’s no such thing as too much bacon. The incredible properties of these sizzling, crispy, pink strips of salty goodness cannot be underestimated. Bacon can convert vegetarians to carnivores, can be enjoyed at any time of the day (or night) and improves the flavour of every imaginable recipe.
So could there be anything more perfect than pairing this miracle food with a glass of equally miraculous wine? In celebration of the 2014 Australian Bacon Week (yes, it’s real) which runs from 22 – 28th June we took on the serious issue of finding the perfect bacon and wine pairing. And what we found was this: it depends on when you’re eating it, and what you’re eating it with.
Here’s the fabulously definitive guide on what wine goes with bacon!
Breakast / Brunch Bacon
Bacon and Eggs
Sparkling wines particularly love foods that are salty and crisp. But good ol’ bacon and eggs are probably not worth popping open a bottle of prized vintage Champagne for. A better, and more reasonably priced, bet is a zippy, crisp and lemony Prosecco which cuts through the greasy, salty deliciousness with ease.
Bacon, Avocado and Tomato on Toast
Sure, it could be the breakfast of champions, but just add a glass or two of a tight and lean Sauvignon Blanc (think Adelaide Hills instead of Marlborough) and there’s no way this is a day for a triathlon.
French Toast (or Pancakes) with Bacon & Maple Syrup
A pretty pink and slightly sweet Moscato is a fantastic choice with this dish, as the sweetness instantly disappears when chomping down on the syrupy bread, leaving you with beautiful rosewater and turkish delight and flavours swirling round your mouth, followed by a salty kick from the bacon. (You know that whole salted caramel thing? Same idea.)
In the Alsace/Lorraine region bordering France and Germany they are famous for two things. Quiche and Riesling. Don’t mess with it. Nuff said.
Remember that thing about sparkling wine being a perfect match for salty crunchy stuff? Well here we’ve got salt, we’ve got crunch, and we’ve also got some rosy tomato and creamy mayo. So it’s a rosy, creamy sparkling you should go for – a luscious Sparkling Rose.
Bacon & Cheese Slider
Salty from the bacon and cheese, sweet and fruity from the onions and sauce, and crispy from the toasted bun. With so much going on you’ve really got to go one of two ways: White – a luscious, crisp and fruity Viognier or/ Red – a racy, berry laden Grenache.
Split Pea & Bacon Soup
Throw a salty, smoked bacon bone in a pot of water, add some split peas, and three hours later you have one seriously delicious dinner. The thick texture and intense saltiness mean that red wines tend to stand up better. And it’s the lighter, racier reds that do the best. Grab a big glass of Pinot Noir, ladle hot soup into the bowl, light a fire and let the magic begin.
Fresh Oysters topped with Crispy Bacon
Okay, so NOW it’s Champagne time. Pick a really good one, and go for it. There is possibly no better food and wine match on earth.
Carbonara sauce is definitely not the easiest dish to eat while wearing a white shirt . But it IS delicious. And it is, arguably, the most sophisticated and tasty way of enjoying bacon and eggs for dinner. The saltiness and the creaminess of the dish, which is achieved through the well timed addition of eggs and cheese (cream is never used in an authentic carbonara) means that this is beautifully matched with a fruity, crisp Pinot Grigio or a luscious, aromatic Pinot Gris. Oh, those Italians. How do they always get it so right?!
A good beef burgundy has LOADS of crispy bacon thrown in towards the end of the long cooking time. Never has red wine and bacon been more gloriously matched. Drink whatever you use in the recipe, which is (hopefully) a cracking Pinot Noir, young Shiraz or a GSM blend.