In a word: Everything. Riesling’s unique balance of flavors makes it the world’s most deliciously versatile and food-friendly wine. Riesling’s acidity makes it extremely versatile, able to “cut through” rich, buttery or heavy foods, while sweeter styles make an excellent complement to spicy cuisine.
Many of the most frequently enjoyed Rieslings are popular because they go so well with so many different foods. Generally, fuller-flavored dishes go better with fuller-bodied wines. Everyday Rieslings are perfect with robust dishes including roast pork, chicken or beef, as well as foods that are on the salty side, such as blue veined cheese, bacon or even smoked trout. They also go well with spicier, ethnic foods.
A light, low-alcohol Riesling, such as a Kabinett, is an outstanding aperitif wine, stimulating to the appetite and perfect with lighter cuisines, appetizers, salads, cheeses and cold meats.
When it comes to food pairing, a Spätlese opens any number of great dining options. It’s ideal with seafood such as salmon, lobster or crab, as well as more aromatically spiced cuisines like Thai, Indian or Mexican. A sweeter Auslese Riesling can hold its own with the likes of a rich foie gras or complement heavily seasoned selections.
Rieslings that tend to be lower in alcohol with greater acidity, such as fruity Beerenauslese or an even richer Trockenbeerenauslese are highly sought-after, exceptional dessert wines. In fact, an Eiswein Riesling makes a fabulous dessert in itself!