Wine by Pete Stew­art

The Herald on Sunday - Sunday Herald Life - - Food And Drink - Pete Stew­art is Glas­gow di­rec­tor of In­ver­ar­ity One to One, 185a Bath Street.­ver­ar­i­ty­mor­

A clas­sic food and wine match is steak with a struc­tured, tan­nic red such as Caber­net Sau­vi­gnon or Mal­bec. But are we over-sim­pli­fy­ing our choice? How do you like your steak – rare, medium-rare, or burnt to a crisp? And will you be hav­ing fil­let, rib-eye or sir­loin? With a pep­per­corn, blue cheese or bear­naise sauce? Do you cook it in the oven, on a hot grill or on the bar­be­cue?

Leaner cuts of meat such as fil­lets are bet­ter with wines with softer tan­nins. For ex­am­ple, a rare fil­let is per­fectly part­nered with a good red Bur­gundy such as a Gevrey-Cham­bertin or a Nuits-Sain­tGe­orges.

Steak tartare is tricky, but try it with a nice Julienas and you won’t be dis­ap­pointed. A rare sir­loin is the one to go with Caber­net Sau­vi­gnon or Mal­bec. The fats and pro­teins in the meat will soften the ef­fect of the tan­nins on the palate, mak­ing the steak and the wine taste bet­ter. If you cook your steak for longer, you’ll lose some fat from the meat and the big, tan­nic wine will taste slightly bit­ter as a re­sult. A bet­ter match would be a more ma­ture Bordeaux, or per­haps a su­per Tus­can.

If you’re cook­ing on the bar­be­cue, and serv­ing with a pep­per­corn sauce, try an Aus­tralian Shi­raz. So, you have lots of op­tions and you should en­joy ex­per­i­ment­ing.

If you’re go­ing all out for the rare fil­let, you should spoil your­self with a bot­tle of the Mai­son du Tastelune Nuits-Saint-Ge­orges 1er Cru Les Pruliers 2011 (M&S, £52). This is richer than the wines from neigh­bour­ing es­tates and is made with­out the use of her­bi­cides or pes­ti­cides. It’s ex­pen­sive, but it will be lovely with your fil­let.

The Mal­bec to grace your wine rack this week­end is the Catena Mal­bec 2015 (Ma­jes­tic, £13.99). This has all the tan­nins to match the rare sir­loin, and it has a lovely spicy note which helps to echo the ex­tra flavours in a pep­pered steak, or one served with a pep­per­corn sauce. It’s a good all-rounder and doesn’t overly im­pact your wal­let.

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