Matching food and wine is a relatively straightforward process. Light food with light wines i.e white, and robust dishes with flavourful wines.
Sparkling wines, pending on their dryness or sweetness, can be matched with the majority of dishes commonly consumed in western countries.
There are a few rules that you should observe.
Highly spiced foods and heavily curried dishes are best matched with beer or raita as Indians do.
Artichokes contain cynarin that makes food taste sweet, hence f you absolutely want to serve wine with this vegetable, select a tart wine to compensate for the sweetness of the artichoke.
Raw garlic possesses a sulphury taste, which no wine can overcome. Garlic that has been cooked becomes mellow and creamy and pleasant. You can serve fruity white wines or roses with garlic-infused foods, and if garlic is dominant in a roast meat sauce select an earthy and robust wine.
Tomatoes make dry wine taste sour. After all, tomatoes are fruit. If you decide to serve a caprese salad (sliced tomatoes, mozzarella di buffala, basil, lemon juice, and olive oil), a light fruity white wine should do the trick.
Asparagus and wine clash, but grilled, or sautéed, or roasted white asparagus should go relatively well with sauvignon blanc from the Loire valley in France or New Zealand. White asparagus is easier to match than more intensely flavoured green asparagus, which is more common in North America.
Anchovies commonly used in Caesar salad dressing or in other combinations are salty. Salt emphasises alcohol and oak flavours. The taste of fishiness clashes with tannins. If you must serve wine with food containing anchovies, select fruit-forward reds or high-acid fruity whites.
For foods generating “heat” in teh mouth i.e Thai, or Szechwan or Cantonese, off dry, or medium-sweet, low alcohol white wines are recommended. Try kabinett quality Mosel wines or off-dry Alsatian.
Creamy dishes, smoked salmon, latkes, crab claws, and mildly salty foods go well with sparkling wines. Robust dishes can be matched with sparkling rose or blanc de noirs.
Many people erroneously think cheese and wine go well together. The truth is white cheeses are fine with white dry wines ie chardonnay or sauvignon blanc or dry riesling and the like.
Hard cheeses are much more difficult to match, but if you absolutely must, try well cellared fruit wines.
Stilton and wine, although commonly recommended, do not make a good match, but Sauternes and seared goose liver do.