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Tempranillo Food Pairing

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A large portion of Tempranillo production occurs in Spain, and the rest are in Australia, Argentina, Portugal, and the United States. The grape is grown in Spain and is a popular ingredient in Rioja and Syrah, but it’s also used to make a single varietal drink. It can withstand hot, dry climates, making the Spanish countryside an ideal site for growing. 

Spanish Tempranillo has contrasting notes of cherries and leather. It is medium to full-bodied with a smooth finish as some tartness lingers on your mouth. Bottles from New World regions tend to be fruitier with less earthiness. 

Meat That Pairs Well With Tempranillo

Being medium to full-bodied, Tempranillo should be paired with heavier food, like meats and stews. The mild acid level cuts through the fatty meat of lamb and pork but still works with tomato-based dishes. Paella is a Spanish style dish with bold flavors and typically is consisting of seafood, rice, chicken, shrimp, vegetables & saffron. And it goes very well with a lighter tempranillo.

Old bottles, like Reserva and Portuguese Tinta Roriz, enhance the flavors of grilled smoked meats. It means you can drink Tempranillo with cheeseburgers!

Cheese That Pairs Well With Tempranillo

Manchego is the classic cheese partner of Tempranillo. It is also produced in Spain from the milk of a Manchega sheep. The dryness and vibrant red fruit flavors of the Spanish grapes offer an ideal backdrop for the slightly oily, slightly acidic, and intense aromas of Manchego. 

Most sheep’s milk cheeses have the right saltiness and grain to balance the smooth and fruit-forward profile of Tempranillo. You may also consider Idiazabal, Pecorino, Roncal, and Zamorano cheeses.

Appetizers That Pair Well With Tempranillo

Younger bottles of Tempranillo, particularly the Joven style, are great with tapas. The fruity notes balance the earthiness of calamares, tortillas, and grilled Zamburiñas (scallops). If you have a high-tannin variety, such as Rioja or Shiraz, it would be best to steer clear of spicy appetizers. 

You may also like to drink a nice glass of tempranillo with some chocolate.

Vegetarian Dishes That Pair Well With Tempranillo

Don’t worry if red meat is off the menu! You can enjoy Tempranillo with a variety of vegetarian dishes. The key is to consider wine as one of the ingredients to balance the taste components of the drink and the dish. 

The earthy notes of mushrooms, beans, potatoes, and turnips highlight the red fruit savors of Tempranillo. Think mushroom risotto, cauliflower gratin with almond sauce, and farro salad with roasted root vegetables.

Herbs That Pair Well With Tempranillo

Lemongrass, oregano, and tarragon are excellent matches for fruity reds like Tempranillo. It’s a surprising combination that creates a burst of flavors. The leather and tobacco notes in the wine work beautifully with those spices.

Best Foods To Eat With Tempranillo

Tempranillo has savory qualities that work well with other cuisines. It’s only essential to look for ingredients that complement the torrent of red fruit flavors. 

  • Paella
  • Cheeseburgers
  • Manchego cheese
  • Calamares (calamari)
  • Mushroom risotto
  • Farro salad

All About Tempranillo

Pairing Wine With Paella

Pairing Wine With Spanish Food

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