Julia Child once wisely observed, “Wine is meant to be with food––that’s the point of it.”
At Bottiglia Cucina & Enoteca, we couldn’t agree more. Sure, it’s true that both wine and food can be great separately. But together? That’s where the real magic happens.
The right wine with food––especially Italian food––has the ability to elevate a meal from great to purely transcendental. Who wouldn’t want to experience that sort of pleasure?
If you’re uncertain where to get started with how to pair Italian food and wine, you’re in the right place. Come on down to the Green Valley Ranch in Henderson, and we’ll offer up a brief education on some of the most food-friendly wines to pair with the classic Italian dishes on our menu!
There’s a reason why winemaker André Tchelistcheff said “Chardonnay is a red wine masquerading as a white.”
Among white wines, Chardonnay is definitely one of the more robust options. It has a pleasing, easygoing flavor that is pleasurable alone but has a creaminess that lets it stand up to more assertive flavors like cheese and that works well with lighter proteins including poultry, fish, and shellfish.
On our menu, Chardonnay makes a great pairing with dishes like our Spicy Tuna Tartare, which is made with Calabrian chile, roasted peppers, capers, and served on fennel toast; it’s also a great pick with our King Crab Bucatini, which is made with zucchini, roasted tomatoes, and Meyer lemon cream.
This pleasing white wine has a full-bodied flavor that brings out the flavor of vegetables, herbs, and mild-flavored fish.
In terms of food pairings, you can’t go wrong with Pinot Grigio and our Chilean Sea Bass entree, as the wine will complement both the fish and its accompaniments––farro risotto, carrot purée, and peas.
Rosé? Yes way! Rosé is an extremely versatile choice when enjoying Italian cuisine. Why? Its flavor and texture pair well with just about any type of dish.
It’s a delightful choice with lighter fare like our Beet Salad, which is prepared with gorgonzola dolce, red wine vinaigrette, crispy prosciutto, and wild arugula. But then again, it’s just as delicious with a richer dish like our Veal Piccata, which is made with lemon, capers, and white wine…it even tastes great with side dishes like our Crispy Brussels Sprouts, Roasted Spaghetti Squash, or our Rosemary Roasted Potatoes.
Barolo is a full-bodied red that has plenty of tannins that make it the perfect complement to rich dishes, particularly those featuring fatty meats.
It makes for a cozy accompaniment with our Meatballs, which are served with gravy and parmesan bread crumbs…and it’s also a definite love match with our Rigatoni Sausage and Broccoli, which is made with calabrian chile, ricotta, fennel bread crumbs.
Chianti is probably one of the most famous wines to pair with Italian food. It’s not hard to see why: this dry red wine really goes with pretty much all of your favorites, from salads to cheese to pasta dishes.
Chianti feels just as at home with our Burrata & Tomato Caprese salad, made with marinated heirloom tomatoes, torn burrata, pistachios, and aged balsamic as it does with our Spinach Lasagna, which is composed with ricotta, basil, and mozzarella.
With a smooth, juicy flavor and not too much acidity, Merlot is a fine pairing for chicken and lighter proteins, but also works well with red meats that aren’t too highly spiced and mingles well with the earthy flavor of roasted vegetables.
It’s a great pairing with our Roasted Chicken entree, which is served with arugula, lemon, and pepperoncini; it’s also a great pick with our Wood Grilled Wagyu New York Steak, which comes on a platter with crispy artichokes and agrodolce steak sauce.
Not into meat? Happily, it also pairs with plenty of the popular vegan items on our menu. Try it with our Vegan Eggplant Parm, a cozy comfort food dish made with wood baked eggplant and cherry tomato sauce.
André Tchelistcheff notes that Pinot Noir is a “white wine masquerading as a red.” Indeed, it is one of the few reds that you’d consider pairing with seafood!
As a wine, Pinot Noir is incredibly versatile. Its slightly zippy, light flavor works well with a huge variety of flavors, from the earthy umami of mushrooms to fish to thicker and more hearty dishes like stews and roasted chicken.
At Bottiglia, Pinot Noir is a great choice with our Veal Marsala, mushrooms, marsala wine, veal jus. Or, try it with our Wild Mushroom Tagliatelle, made with black truffle cream, burrata, and garlic crumbs.
This vibrant and lively wine has undertones of fruit and a decent amount of acidity. It loves just about anything made with tomato sauce, so it’s right at home on an Italian restaurant’s menu!
At Bottiglia, Sangiovese is a great choice with our Wood Baked Rigatoni, served with Italian sausage, cherry peppers, ricotta, and basil…but it also tastes great with our Vegan Pasta Pomodoro, made with vegan cheese, basil, cherry tomatoes, garlic, and rigatoni.
The richer the food, the better the pairing Zinfandel will be! Zinfandel is an extremely robust red wine, and it can stand up to the rich flavors of pasta sauces and accentuate them, adding a new dimension of flavor.
Zinfandel is a great pairing with full bodied flavors and rich foods…think flavorful meats and rich sauces. You’ll love it paired with our Pappardelle Bolognese, a flavorful mix of San Marzano tomatoes, pancetta, and red wine; and it’s also the perfect pick with our Arancini, which are made with risotto, fontina cheese, and Bolognese sauce.
At Bottiglia Cucina & Enoteca, we believe that the right wine can elevate your dining experience. That’s why we have a carefully curated and extensive wine list in our Henderson Italian restaurant. We’ve got the perfect pairing for every item on our menu!
This post can help you get started with pairings; our friendly staff is more than happy to assist you, as well. Make a reservation today and see for yourself how delicious our wine and food pairings can really be!
What’s your favorite wine and Italian food pairing?