The Absolute Best Type Of Wine To Pair With Tuna

Pairing wines with seafood is not always easy. The traditional adage used to be that white wines paired better with fish, while red wines were more appropriate for meat, notes Wine Spectator. This dictum, however, has long been considered outdated in wine circles — and for a very simple reason.

The term seafood encompasses an enormous spectrum of fish and shellfish, observes Decanter, and not only does each species possess its own unique texture and flavor profile, but there are also many ways in which these seafood varieties can be prepared. Meaning, there is no one size fits all wine pairing.

Tuna, for example, is one of the rare fish options which can be appropriately paired with either red, white, or rosé wines, explains wine expert Lex Madden, Beverage Director for Point Easy in Denver, Colorado. But despite tuna's extraordinary versatility as a pairing partner, Madden does admit that there's one type of wine she prefers above all others when it comes to the saltwater fish.

Wines from Spain and Portugal pair well with tuna

According to Point Easy's Lex Madden, the best wines to pair with tuna come from Portugal and Spain. The grape variety associated with these wines, however, goes by slightly different names in each Iberian country. In Portugal, for example, it's known as Alvarinho; In Spain, Albariño, notes VinePair.

By either name, the salty minerality and acidity in these white wines is an excellent complement for tuna, Madden tells Tasting Table. She mentions another traditional adage, in fact, albeit one that is not in the least outdated: "When it grows together, it goes together." In this case, she's referring to the pairing of these wines with some of their respective country's iconic tuna-focused seafood dishes.

Madden notes, however, that she believes Alvarinho wines from Porgugal, in particular, are the absolute perfect pairing for nearly any tuna dish. Not only that, but these wines are typically quite affordable, even for quality options. "I would expect to pay between $25 [and] $45 for a nice bottle if I wanted to show off a bit alongside an expensive cut of fish," Madden explains. "But great quality wines from this region can be found for $10 [to] $15 if you just want a refreshing glass of wine alongside a tuna salad sandwich or some conservas."