Shiraz is an extremely versatile wine, and that makes it a great food wine. Its great versatility is mostly due to its many different styles. But before we start talking about pairing Shiraz and food, let’s clarify a common misconception – Shiraz or Syrah?
What Is the Difference Between Shiraz and Syrah?
Actually there is no difference between the two. Well, except for their names. Tests have proven that both grapes are the same varietal. However, wines made with Shiraz grapes are often lighter and have a more fruitier style than the more traditional Syrah wine, which has more body, acid and tannins. In Australia, Shiraz is considered the ‘national’ red wine and the Barossa Valley is the most popular wine region for its complex, multi-layered Shiraz.
When it comes to pairing Shiraz and food, just pick a bottle of a good Australian Shiraz (go for Barossa Valley Estate Shiraz 2012) and pair it with an Aussie-approved dish. Here are few suggestions.
Roasted Lamb With Apricots
Roasted lamb is Australia’s national dish, and there is no doubt the dish pairs perfectly with the country’s hero wine, the Shiraz. Because Shiraz pairs particularly well with meat and fruit dishes, this one is a must-try.
BBQ Lamb Ribs
Barbecue is the perfect flavour profile to pair with a Shiraz. Opt for BBQ lamb ribs, Australia’s most loved meat, for a tasteful take on the humble dish.
Aussie Beef Burger
Chili Aussie Beef Burger with balsamic beetroot relish, Swiss cheese and egg, is a force be reckoned with. Although something you would eat when watching soccer with friends, the sandwich becomes very elegant when paired with a glass of Shiraz and is sure a much better option compared to milk shakes any day.
Chicken and Pumpkin
While Americans reserve pumpkins for a pumpkin pie at Thanksgiving Day, the Aussies use squash to cook meals on a regular basis. A simple roast chicken dressed with pumpkin is an amazing dish to pair with a glass of light Shiraz.
Chocolate Pavlova is a dessert that has chocolate meringue, layers of whipped cream and fruit. Since pairing Shiraz with dark chocolate is one of the most pleasurable things in life, opt for cocoa-rich version of the famous Australian dessert for the perfect romantic night you have in mind.
Aussies love the candy bar Violet Crumble – a crunchy honeycomb dipped in chocolate. Did you know that you can make your own version at home? Dip a ready-made honeycomb in melted dark chocolate and enjoy it with a glass of Shiraz.
Pairing Shiraz With Cheese
Cheddar, Gorgonzola, Gouda, Jack, Parmesan, Perail de Bredis, Coeur et crème and Sweet Constantine are cheeses that pair great with Shiraz wine.