Sugar & Spice

High-heat wine pairings at Night + Market

When it comes to pairing wines with food, Thai cuisine is often deemed uncharted territory–especially when the food is as fiery and pungent as the chile-heavy cooking at West Hollywood's Night + Market.

The prevailing theory is spicy-food wines require a good amount of residual sugar, but that isn't always the case. Chef Kris Yenbamroong and Lou Amdur, owner of the former Lou Wine Bar, have some other thoughts on the matter.

By supplanting sweetness with fruity acidity, wines can embrace the capsaicin burn rather than smother it.

During a recent wine dinner, a pounded-chile nam prik plate ($7) was complemented by a 2011 Domaine Renardat-Fâche Cerdon du Bugey ($15 a glass), a plum-red sparkling rosé that captured the juiciness of the fruit without heavy-handed sweetness.

The delicate sweet-and-sour harmony of the 2011 Spaetrot Gebeshuber "Klassik" ($12 a glass) and the creamy pineapple notes of a 2007 Colli Tortonesi Timorasso ($15 a glass) both matched up well against the potent kao kan chin ($12), a leaf-wrapped pouch of jasmine rice mixed with pork blood.

Yenbamroong plans to offer the wine pairings as part of Night + Market's current dineLA menu. Afterward, expect those bottles to join the restaurant's already eclectic wine list.

Night+Market, 9043 Sunset Blvd., West Hollywood; 310-275-9724 or nightmarketla.com