Pairing Wine With Fish & Chips

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Originating as a popular take-away meal in the United Kingdom, Fish and Chips has gained popularity around the world in countries like the United States, Australia, New Zealand, and India. This tasty, indulgent treat consists of French fries (the “chips” in “Fish and Chips”) and flaky white fish—usually, cod, haddock, halibut, or tilapia—smothered in a rich batter and fried until golden and crispy. 

A nice cold beer is usually the go-to beverage of choice with this meal, but there are plenty of excellent choices for wine pairings. White wines are going to be your best bet. Their natural acidity makes for a perfect complement to the salt and fat in fish and chips. You can also go red, but be wary of selecting a red high in tannins, as the tannins can cause a metallic taste when paired with fish.

Wine Flavors to Pair with Fish & Chips

CharacteristicDetail
AcidityHigh
TanninsLow
FruitinessHigh
SpicinessLow
BodyLight-Medium

Best White Wine to Pair with Fish & Chips

Sauvignon Blanc

The strong citrus flavor and herbal notes of a Sauvignon Blanc make a lovely complement to fish and chips. As an added bonus, the acidity will cleanse the palate between bites.

Sparkling Wine

A sparkling wine, or Champagne if you’re feeling fancy, will always work well with salty, fried foods. It’s a perfect balance of acid and fat.

Unoaked Chardonnay

For fish and chips, we recommend unoaked Chardonnay over oaked Chardonnay. An unoaked Chardonnay is lighter, more acidic, and more fruit-forward than its oaked relative and will provide a more refreshing drink for this meal.

Chenin Blanc

Chenin Blanc is very high in acidity and relatively dry. It pairs well with fish and foods with higher fat content.

Best Red Wine to Pair with Fish & Chips

Beaujolais

If red wine is your preference, Beaujolais is an easy to drink, food-friendly red. It’s light body and fruit-forward profile will complement a rich, fatty meal like fish and chips.

Lambrusco

Lambrusco is a light, jammy, sparkling red wine. The effervescent acidity makes it a great complement to the heaviness of fish and chips and is an excellent alternative to white wines.

Barbera

This zesty, low tannin red is a great alternative if you don’t like jammy reds. Serve it slightly chilled for an enjoyable treat with your fish and chips.

Cinsault

This lesser-known red is full of berry flavor, floral aromatics, and high in acidity. It’s a delicious addition to your fish and chips meal that won’t overpower the fish.


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