FAQs: Food & Wine

What are the basic principles of food & wine matching?

To achieve the best match it is necessary to analyse the basic components in both the wine and the food. The idea is to try to balance them so that neither the food nor the wine overpowers the other. See Food & Wine Matching Basics

Does it matter what wine is served with a particular food or dish?

First of all it is important to take into account personal taste. If a particular combination pleases you then it is the right choice for you. The main reason for food and wine matching is to enhance the overall experience of a dish or meal by pairing it with a wine that will complement it. Think about strawberries and cream, how when combined they are more delicious than when eaten separately, even though they are tasty foods individually.

What should I think about when matching wine with food?

Remember it is a matter of personal taste, so choose combinations you find particularly pleasing. Many wine styles evolved to complement the cuisine of the region, and so this is a good starting point for finding a food and wine combination. Have fun, be brave and experiment. Many excellent combinations have been discovered this way. 

Where can I find some food and wine matching suggestions?

For food and wine matching ideas, inspirations and suggestions go to our Food and Wine Matching pages.

Is there such a thing as a safe bet food and wine pairing?

Some food and wine combinations work so well that they are truly marriages made in heaven. For example:


Sauvignon Blanc

Christmas Pudding

Liqueur Muscat or Madeira


Fino Sherry or Manzanilla

Foie Gras

Sauternes & Barsac

Fruits de Mers

Muscadet & Albarino

Goat's Cheese

Sancerre or Pouilly Fume



Parma Ham and Melon

Italian Pinot Grigio

Roast Lamb

Red Bordeaux

Roast Pork

Beaujolais, Rioja




Port & Madeira

Strawberries and Cream   

Sweet Vouvray




Are there foods that are impossible to match with wine?

Listed below are foods which are very difficult  to match well with wine. In these instances all you can do is find the best possible match, or better still limit the amount of that particular food. For example, horseradish spoils the flavour of wine so take a small serving rather than great dollops of horseradish sauce with your Roast Beef.

  • Artichokes
  • Capers
  • Chilli
  • Eggs
  • Fennel
  • Horseradish
  • Olives
  • Spinach
  • Truffles
  • Yoghurt


I want to learn how to match food and wine. Where can I go?

Berry Bros. & Rudd hold Food and Wine Matching Tasting Events in our historic cellars at 3, St. James's Street. London SWI.