Ray Isle (@islewine on Twitter) is Food & Wine's executive wine editor. We trust his every cork pop and decant – and the man can sniff out a bargain to boot. Take it away, Ray.
Wine and Chinese food tends to promote a strange response among wine writers, which can be summed up as “pair Chinese food with off-dry Riesling. Or Gewürztraminer.”
Well, fine, but isn’t that sort of like saying “pair French food with white Burgundy” or “pair Italian food with a red wine?” Last I heard, Chinese cuisine had enormous regional variety and a culinary tradition that extends back, oh, a few thousand years or so. (In 2005, archeologists discovered the remains of some 4,000 year old noodles near the Yellow River; those are some mighty old noodles.)
Now, Americanized Chinese food, that’s a more recent invention - safe to say the folks who made those noodles four millennia ago weren’t chowing down on plates of General Tso’s Chicken. Regardless, here are some pairing suggestions for dishes from both the traditional and not-so realms.
Steamed Whole Fish with Ginger and Scallion
Kung Pao Chicken
Salted Baked Duck Tongue
More from Food & Wine:
© 2011 American Express Publishing Corporation. All rights reserved.