Pairing Wine With Greek Food

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Greek food is an array of fresh ingredients and bold flavors. Tomatoes, olives, feta, red onion and olive oil are just a few of the ubiquitous ingredients found in Greek dishes. You can find an assortment of meat dishes, seafood, vegetarian plates and salads to suit every palate, and luckily there’s a wine for each.

When pairing wine with Greek food, you can’t go wrong with a Greek wine. There’s a reason “It goes with what it grows with” is a popular saying in the world of wine pairing and the people of Greece have been making wine for centuries upon centuries. However, Greek wines aren’t always accessible to everyone as many local grocers don’t carry them. With that in mind, our wine recommendations include both Greek wines, and the more commonly found international wines.

Best Red Wine To Pair With Greek Food

Dry, light to medium-bodied reds are good all-around choices for Greek food. 

  • Cabernet Franc: medium body with tart fruit flavors, similar to Pinot Noir.
  • Pinot Noir: always a popular choice: light, sweet red, high on aromatics.
  • Beaujolais: also known as Gamay, light, low tannins.
  • Tempranillo; medium-bodied with high tannins, similar to Merlot.

Best White Wine To Pair With Greek Food

Whites make natural pairings with Greek food due to their higher acidity. A light, crisp white with a hint of sweetness will complement most Greek dishes.

  • Riesling: lightly sweet, crisp, and refreshingly acidic.
  • Rosé; bright acidity with strong berry flavor.  
  • Champagne: Bubbly, floral and fruity with notes of citrus, peach or cherry.
  • Sauvignon Blanc: highly acidic, fruity, dry white with herb tones. 

Greek Wine Varietals To Pair With Greek Food

While largely overlooked and often underrated, the Greeks have been producing wine for centuries. There are many to try but here are just a few we recommend:

  • Agiorgitiko (AYE-yor-YEE-tee-ko); velvety black cherry flavor, oak aged with medium acidity.
  • Assyrtiko (Ah-SEER-tee-koh): One of Greece’s top wines. A lean white with passion fruit, lemon, and a salty finish.
  • Athiri (ah-thee-ree); crips white with notes of nectarine and lemon.
  • Moscofilero (mos-ko-fi-ler-oh); a bright and aromatic white with tangerine and peach aromas. 
  • Roditis (ro-dee-tis): Full-bodied, complex, with notes of apple and pear.
  • Savatiano (Sa-va-tya-NO): Similar to Chablis, with flavors of green apple and lime with a tingling acidity.

Pairing Wine with Various Greek Dishes

Wine With Greek Salad

While simple in ingredients—tomatoes, feta, olives and onions—this salad is heavy in flavor. When choosing a wine, go for a Sauvignon Blanc or the Greek Vidiano, which is an overall great wine choice for Greek vegetarian dishes.

Wine With Moussaka

This hearty lamb and eggplant casserole can hold up to a richer wine, as long as it’s not too robust. A Tempranillo will fit the bill here or choose a Limniona from the Greece mainland.

Wine With Gyros

A spicy, light-bodied red is sure to please with this favorite Greek dish. You can’t go wrong with a Pinot Noir or Zinfandel with this dish, or try the Greek Assyrtiko.

Wine With Souvlaki

Similar to gyros, souvlaki is a dish with heavily seasoned meat which means a bold wine with fruity flavors should go great with this dish. Zinfandel is our favorite to pair with souvlaki.

Wine With Spanakopita

This filo and spinach pie is rich, flaky and delicious. Pair it with a nicely chilled, buttery Chardonnay or a Roditis from the mainland of Greece.

Wine With Dolmas

Dolmas can vary by region, but are typically vine leaves stuffed with vegetables and herbs. You’ll want a wine that is somewhat sweet and acidic to pair with this Mediterranean staple. We recommend a Riesling or Rosé or the Greek Moscofilero.

Wine With Roast Lamb

Greece is known for its lamb dishes and the wine pairing is pretty straight forward. Syrah is a consistently reliable pairing with lamb. We also suggest Xinomavro, if you’re looking for a Greek wine.

Wine With Pastitsio

Layered with noodles, a tomato-based sauce and bechamel, this rich, comforting dish will go great with a Barbera or Agiorgitiko.

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