May 08, 2021 by Vicki Denig
Best Wine for Mexican Food
Best Wine Pairings for Mexican Food
Cinco de Mayo has come and gone, and although we love a good margarita, it’s rather unlikely that we’ll be whipping up pitchers at home. So what’s a Mexican takeout lover to do when the craving for tacos strikes? Surprisingly, pop a bottle of wine. This past week, rather than letting the tequila flow, we tested out a handful of wines with a variety of Mexican takeout options—and for those who prefer corkscrew over cocktail shaker, we discovered some pretty exciting pairing options.
Above all, the crowdpleaser here was Storm Sauvignon Blanc—which is really no surprise, considering that winemaker Ernst Storm affectionately refers to this bottle as “Margarita Juice.” Produced in the heart of California’s Santa Ynez Valley, this sustainably-farmed wine oozes with flavors of pink grapefruit, lemon, lime blossom, and tropical fruits. The wine’s refreshing, lip-puckering finish is quite similar to that of a zesty margarita, making it perfect for sipping with fish tacos or chips and guac. If there’s only going to be one bottle of wine on the #TacoTuesday table, let this be it.
For similar “margarita vibes,” check out Von Winning Sauv B. This super fun find is produced in Germany’s Pfalz region, which is generally better known for its Riesling than its Sauvignon Blanc. Whereas Storm’s SB errs on the more citrus-laden side of things, this bottle is all green apple and passion fruit, marked by jasmine, lime skin, and grassy nuances. The wine is produced from organically-farmed fruit and is sure to be a hit with elote, chicken fajitas, and pico de gallo. Par For the Course is another excellent option (Sauvignon Blanc again—see our theme here?) Produced in New Zealand, the unofficial New World home of Sauvignon Blanc, this bottle shows more of the grassy, green herb flavors of Sauvignon Blanc, marked by lingering undertones of melon and guava.
Best Red Wines for Mexican Food
However, red wine lovers fear not—it’s not just about the SB here. On the opposite side of the margarita vibe, there’s a whole world of flavor-packed reds that go perfectly with Mexican cuisine. Margaux’s go-to taco picks are generally made with Grenache and Tempranillo, which, when paired with carnitas, chicken, or carne asada tacos, absolutely come to life. For the Grenache side of things, check out New Zealand-born winemaker Angela Osborne’s expression at A Tribute to Grace, produced on California’s Central Coast. The wine is produced from organic / biodynamically-farmed fruit, and its medium-bodied palate jumps with flavors of fresh-picked strawberries, red rose petals, and orange spice. Bright acid and moderate tannins hold up well to any meat-based taco, though carnitas would really be our go to here.
For something with a bit more oomph, check out Finca Torremilanos ‘Los Cantos’ Tempranillo. Hailing from Ribera del Duero, Spain, fruit for this wine comes from five different organically-farmed parcels across the region, each distinguishable by their “canto” (round river stone) laden soils. The wine’s vibrant yet full-bodied palate oozes with flavors of raspberries, dark plums, and tobacco undertones. 16 months of aging in French oak barrels definitely adds some sweet spice to the mix, which play well with the spicy-sweet undertones found in mole sauces and all things asado. This wine also comes from the first Demeter-certified winery in the region.
“Best Wines for Mexican Food – $30 and Under!”
All of these wines clock in under the $30 price tag, are produced from sustainable / organic / biodynamic fruit, and promise to pack a whole lot of flavor per glass. Keep a few on hand and let the impromptu #TacoTuesday (or Wednesday, or Thursday) nights roll!
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