The Outright Best Style Of Wine To Pair With Fried Foods

Whether you enjoy noshing on crispy beer-battered onion rings, salty French fries, or spicy chicken wings, there's truly a deep-fried style for everyone. There's just something so comforting about eating crispy, warm food and drinking your favorite beverage with it. But is there a specific type of wine that will pair perfectly with your favorite fried treat? Noble Riot general manager and sommelier Matt Strauch told Tasting Table in an exclusive interview that certain types of alcohol can help elevate your favorite flavors.

He revealed that the best style of wine to drink with fried foods are varieties that have high acidity and low tannins like white wines such as a Riesling, Chenin Blanc, and Sauvignon Blanc. "These wines can help to cut through the rich, fatty flavors of fried foods and refresh the palate," Strauch explained. "Along that same thinking, dry rosé, Pinot Noir, and other 'light' reds are also great alternatives."

The types of wine you might want to avoid with deep-fried dishes

While Strauch recommends pairing sparkling white wines with your next basket of fried calamari, he suggests avoiding alcohol that has low acidity and tannins that are richer like a bottle of Cabernet Sauvignon, Zinfandel, or Syrah. "Tannins accentuate richness and fat, which might overwhelm the contrast we look for in fried food pairings," he explained. However, if you're eating something lightly fried with a rich sauce, Strauch said you could reach for a heftier wine. Sweet wines can also help balance out spicy fried food like jalapeño poppers.

The sommelier explained that while these pairings are ideal, there are no fried foods you can't pair with some type of wine because there are just so many options out there. "There are far too many possibilities for wine styles, food preparations, and palates to make limits," he admitted. "We don't hinder Mouth Parties at Noble Riot! If Hannibal Lecter can pair Chianti with livers, I can pair Rocky Mountain Fried Osyers with Merlot."

So, the next time you're ordering fried chicken from your favorite restaurant, you'll know that a sparkling wine like champagne will complement it perfectly, but there's always still some room for more adventurous pairings. Bottoms up!