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Sep 30, 2008 09:45 PM

Wine Pairings w/ Asian Foods

Yes, I know there have been a few threads on this already; don't feel compelled to duplicate what's already there. I have a wine group that gets together monthly, every month we have a different theme - sometimes just wine-related, sometimes tied to food pairings. This month is wine w/ Asian foods. Here's the food lineup, please suggest either a perfect match for one dish or something you'd be interested in trying with multiple items ->

- chicken & mushroom potstickers w/ soy-garlic dipping sauce
- vegetable spring rolls (tofu, rice noodles, shiitake, carrot, avocado, herbs)
- miso-glazed salmon
- korean-style short ribs
- peking duck
- various maki (spicy tuna, negi-hama, shrimp w/ shiso)

Extra points for unexpected combinations. I expect to see lots of reisling and gewurtz. I'm leaning toward CDP particularly w/ the duck and short ribs - but for some reason I keep hearing a small voice in the back of my head saying "Brunello?"

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  1. We just tasted a lovely Loire Chenin Blanc (sec) from Domaine de la Roulerie (Anjou 2005, Les Terasses, $24 Canadian). It is complex, spicy, assertive, well balanced, with a refreshing acidity. I think it would go great with the lighter dishes and the fish dishes. It would hold up nicely to the spicy tuna for example, and the ginger flavours in various dishes. I would even try it with the duck and short ribs, although it might not be as successful.

    1. Chicken & Mushroom Potstickers - Weingut Bruegel Silvaner Silvaner “B” Spätlese trocken (Dry) Abtswinder Altenberg (


      Vegetable Spring Rolls - Riesling Fellbach Trocken (Dry) 2007 - Weingut Schnaitmann (


      Miso glased salmon - 2006 "CLOS DU SOLEIL" CHARDONNAY, Domaine Serene (


      Korean-Style Short Ribs - A good Lemberger from Weingut Seeger, 2007 (


      Peking Duck - 2006 "YAMHILL CUVÉE" PINOT NOIR


      Maki - Grüner Veltliner Langenlois Terrassen 2007, Weingut Fred Loimer, Langenlois
      (üner_V...) -

      Rainer Schnaitmann
      Auf der Unter, Wackernheim, Rhineland-Palatinate 55263, DE

      Heinrich Br
      Hauptstr. 49 Castell

      Helmut Seeger
      Rohrbacher Straße 101, Leimen, Baden-Württemberg 69181, DE

      Domaine Serene
      6555 NE Hilltop Ln, Dayton, OR

      1. Postickers: Medium-full bodied Riesling that isn't too sweet. A Kabinett or else an Austrian. Alsatian would be ok, too. As would an Alsatian (Tokay) Pinot Gris. Champagne.

        Spring rolls: Medium-light bodied Riesling Kabinett, preferably Mosel. Potentially, Gruner Veltliner. Champagne.

        Salmon: Cru Beaujolais. Or fruit forward Pinot but NOT one of the really dark 'Pinot-as-Syrah' types such as those that frequently come out of areas like the Santa Lucia highlands. (Pisoni, Gary's Vineyards, etc). More like a Russian River or Sonoma Coast such as Merry Edwards. Alternatively, a very big, but well balanced, CA Chardonnay (but these are very expensive) such as Kistler, Aubert, Peter Michael, Marcassin... (I actually think Auberts would pair the best of all of them). If you wanted to try something WAY "out there" that I'm not 100% would work, but might be truly truly awesome... a Gravner or a Radikon. (Points, please!) Also, Champagne (rose or non)

        Short ribs: Very rich Riesling. Austrian or German. Alsace is also ok. If German I'd look to the Pfalz at the Spatlese level. Or to any area's Auslese ONLY if it has some serious age on it. '83s can be very good right now. Big fruit-driven Pinot also works. As wold your CdP idea, especially if it is Greache-based, like a Marcoux. Champagne (rose or non).

        Duck: German Riesling from anywhere. Preferably Spatlese. A Scheurebe Spatlese would also work. Cru Beajolais might also work. Champagne (rose or non)

        Maki: Champagne (rose or non)

        3 Replies
        1. re: whiner

          Hi Whiner,

          Good calls, mate.

          The only thing I would watch are the spices - especially the sharp, spicy plum sauce to Peking duck.

          But I really agree with you on the choice of dry Spätlese Riesling for crispy duck, especially from a warm year. We had it with Köhler Ruprecht's 2003 (super hot summer year) and the flavors from the crispy fat of the duck really opened up with the wine. Magical combination, that was.

          1. re: whiner

            What Whiner said all the way through, with specific suggestions within his:

            Postickers: Medium-full bodied Riesling that isn't too sweet. Kabinett or Spatlese.

            Spring rolls: Same as above. Veltliner. Champagne.

            Salmon: Beaujolais, doesn't have to be Cru. Rose Champagne.

            Short ribs: Very rich Riesling. Austrian or German.

            Duck: Riesling from anywhere. Rose Champagne.

            Maki: Rose Champagne cannot be beat, IMO.

          2. Glad to see at least one mention of bubbly. Frod - if you got any naucratis from scholium, I'd try it with the pot stickers, duck, or salmon. Use the Vinturi if you have it. It makes a big difference there. Also let me know if you ever plan on doing a Middle Eastern, Morrocan or even Indian night. My in-laws carry a red that pairs beautifully with spiced and aromatic flavors and I'd like to get your input on that. you can reach me at

            5 Replies
            1. re: Icantread

              Hi Icantread,

              I just caught you in another wine thread with the fella from NYC. Good to see you here too.

              There's a guy who runs a Thai restaurant I know that was once voted as Germany's best wine collection in a restaurant. Hard to believe, but its true.

              His advice to me for super spicy curries something along the lines of a Tatachilla Coonawarra Shiraz 2002.

              I was very pleasantly surprised when I tried it with beef curry and spicy Thai rice noodles. Always thought I'd stick to beer.

              1. re: girobike

                Actually, I can definitely see a good shiraz standing up to a hearty beef curry. Reds are so tricky though, just because they can overwhelm the spicy subtle nuances of some (especially thai) asian dishes.

              2. re: Icantread

                ICR - my Scholium shipment will not arrive in time, I had the same thought but the timing is off.

                girobike - Lotus of Siam in Las Vegas has a pretty impressive selection of German wines too.

                1. re: Frodnesor

                  If you're not like me and do not mind rebuying something you already ordered, locowine (happy wine's website) carries it for $24.99:

                  Probably best just to wait though. For that matter you can get a nice rueda or verdejo for the spring rolls

                  1. re: Frodnesor

                    Hi Frodnesor,

                    Just ran through the list that Lotus has. My personal comment: Any reasonable Riesling from Mosel, Nahe or Rheingau will mix well with Thai food. No question.

                    There are some gems there like Robert Weil's collection in there as well.

                    Personally, I would never shell out for that good a Riesling with Thai food. Call me a traditionalist, but I spent much of my life in Asia (4 months in Thailand inclusive) and I can count on the fingers of one hand the outstanding experiences mixing good wine with good Asian food.

                    I mean, not good experiences - outstanding ones. Good is easy. My wife and I practise every time we do a good coconut Thai curry chicken, rice noodle salad or other creations at home (See pic).

                    Having said that, its cool to see a Thai Restaurant in Las Vegas having such a good collection!

                2. In addition to the above comments, I've found that in dealing with red meats prepared in an Asian style, if you're lookinf for a red, that tempranillo-based reds work well. I think that they would pair adequately wth the ribs and the duck.