Wine Information & Reviews | Vino Critic

Pairing Wine With Walleye

with No Comments

Pairing Wine With Walleye

The wine you choose to pair with a walleye fish, one native to Canada and the Northeast United States, can be considerably different based on the ingredients and flavours that are used in its preparation. The sophisticated nature of the fish would pair well with light-bodied, crisp, and dry white wines with medium acidity and low tannins.

However, given the versatile nature of this fish, grilling or searing it with a variety of herbs, or in a garlic-lemon-butter sauce would bring out a whole new profile compared to if you were to blend in a white wine sauce or serve it with tartar sauce. That’s why we cover a range of white and yes, red wines too that we would pair with walleye.

Wine Characteristics To Pair With Walleye

Characteristic Detail
Sweetness Dry
Acidity Low
Tannins Low 
Body Light White / Rosé
Tasting Notes Citrus and stone fruits

Wines that offer a fresh and citrusy note on the palette would enhance the flavours of the walleye and bring out its freshness. A light-bodied white or a rosé would be ideal as they wouldn’t overpower the subtle characteristics of the dish.

Best Red Wine To Drink With Walleye

For all the red wine lovers out there – the good news is that you can after all enjoy a glass of red wine with fish. It all depends on the texture and flavour of the fish you are preparing and often a red or rosé will turn out to pair best with fish especially when you’re in cooler temperatures.

Pinot Noir

A young pinot noir with more red fruit-like flavours such as cherry, red currant, or raspberry would be ideal as it would cut through the fattiness in dishes made with garlic butter or olive oil. 


An Italian chianti would be one of the best reds that can be paired with delicately prepared white fish. The mild red wine varietals would complement the flavours released in a barbequed fish.


An ideal accompaniment would include a light, crispy and dry rosé of Grenache, Syrah, or Cinsault. Served chilled, it would balance the heat coming from a well-seasoned walleye grill.

Best White Wine To Drink With Walleye

There is no shortage of white wines that can be coupled with walleye. The variety of tasting notes each white wine offers gives such a range to choose from – you’ll be spoilt by choice.

Sauvignon Blanc

Sauvignon Blancs and most fish are a match made in heaven. The dry, tart, and acidic nature of a sauvignon blanc makes it a great candidate to go with a variety of main course fish dishes, especially those that have herbal elements or are prepared with fresh-fruit-based sauces.

Pinot Grigio

A slightly sweeter, fruity, and well-rounded, Pinot Grigio served chilled would be our go-to wine for a fine pairing. The simple texture of the fish would match the lightness of a Pinot Grigio. 


The velvety nature of chardonnay makes it a great wine to go well with a lemon-garlic-butter sauce fish or fish served with tartar sauce, adding oak and creaminess to complete the meal.


If you’re looking for a lighter but more intensely flavoured wine, a riesling would be a bold but beautiful choice that would enhance a saucy pan-seared fish with its sweet and intense finish.

Pairing Wine With Walleye Prepared Different Ways

Wine WIth Deep Fried Walleye

Most whitefish like walleye can also be deep fried and served with chips and sauce. A higher acidic wine would be best to cut through the fattiness of a deep-fried fish so we’d go with a dry, light, and crisp Sauvignon Blanc here.

Best Wine To Drink With Walleye

A variety of fish preparations like chargrilled, or pan-seared with herbs, offer so many choices of light and rich wines that can be paired with walleye. The best part is that you are not limited to either a red or white variety due to the versatile nature of the fish. It all depends on how you prefer to serve it and for the most common walleye dishes, we recommend the following wines:

  • Pinot Noir
  • Chianti
  • Rosé
  • Sauvignon Blanc
  • Pinot Grigio
  • Chardonnay
  • Riesling