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Is there a more natural pairing than raw oysters and muscadet?

Tabrams Apr 24, 2009 07:10 AM

Recently spent a week on Chincoteague Island, VA and just about every day bought a dozen oysters from Gary Howard seafood and washed them down with muscadet. Not my favorite producer of muscadet pictured but adequate under the circumstances (should have packed some in).

This is possibly the best wine and food pairing that exists. At least I’ve never had any better.

 
  1. TonyO Apr 27, 2009 06:33 PM

    I love a great bottle of wine, but with raw oysters I have to give the nod to ice cold vodka. Russian Standard or Reyka work well.

    2 Replies
    1. re: TonyO
      d
      dinwiddie Dec 21, 2009 03:59 PM

      Much as I love raw oysters and muscadet, I also like them with Fino sherry. As to sublime pairings, what can be better than fois gras and sauterne?

      1. re: dinwiddie
        r
        RicRios Dec 21, 2009 05:11 PM

        "what can be better than fois gras and sauterne"

        Hmm... let me dig the archives.

        There you are: http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/5307...

    2. bkhuna Apr 24, 2009 08:37 PM

      I think Hidalgo La Gitana Manzanilla goes better with shellfish, especially oysters.

      6 Replies
      1. re: bkhuna
        Tabrams Apr 25, 2009 12:22 AM

        Is that a fino sherry?

        1. re: Tabrams
          m
          Maximilien Apr 25, 2009 06:14 AM

          Yep, It's a "variety" of Fino xeres; I find it a bit lighter and finer than Fino; it's made closer to the sea than Fino, so it has a little saltiness to the taste.

          1. re: Maximilien
            bkhuna Apr 27, 2009 10:18 AM

            The "brininess" of Manzanilla is what makes it the perfect pairing with oysters.

            1. re: bkhuna
              maria lorraine Apr 27, 2009 03:27 PM

              About the brininess in manzanilla, yes.

              Many of the minerally white wines also have the same brininess or sense of salinity, even a marine quality -- another reason these wines work.

              1. re: maria lorraine
                r
                RicRios Apr 27, 2009 04:16 PM

                The illustration provided by the OP displays a Domaine de la Batardiere muscadet sèvre-et-maine. Now, as can be seen from the link below, the muscadet sèvre-et-maine appelation is about 50 kilometers from the sea. Maybe "brininess" is a correct descriptor for the wine taste. But in any case I wouldn't attribute that to proximity to the sea. Otherwise, all médoc wines (just an example) would share the same brininess, or even more, being closer to the sea.

                http://www.grandlieu.fr/Muscadet/musc...

                1. re: RicRios
                  maria lorraine Apr 27, 2009 05:29 PM

                  Just to be clear, Ric, I agree that a marine quality or brininess or salinity in a wine has nothing to do with the vineyard's proximity to the sea. Those flavors have a different source.

                  But the presence of those flavors in a wine can mean that the wine pairs well with ingredients that are indeed influenced the sea.

      2. m
        Merchant Apr 24, 2009 07:31 PM

        And, of course, a nice Chablis!

        1. m
          Merchant Apr 24, 2009 07:30 PM

          Picpoul de Pinet
          Divine!

          1. s
            Sam B Apr 24, 2009 04:23 PM

            Sancerre (preferably Cotat) and Crottin de Chavignol

            1. m
              mengathon Apr 24, 2009 02:58 PM

              Well, there's always oysters and blanc de blancs champagne...

              But no, not really. A close second for me would be mushroom risotto with a traditional nebbiolo with some age.

              1. maria lorraine Apr 24, 2009 11:52 AM

                Glad you enjoyed that. The two are terribly good together.

                By "natural" pairing, what do you mean?

                There are many food and wine pairings that are express trains to ecstasy, and much debate about "the best wine and food pairing that exists." To accurately make that statement, even for your own individual palate, would mean that you have eaten and drunk widely, sampling a vast number of combinations, including the established sublime pairings. Quite a delicious task...

                1 Reply
                1. re: maria lorraine
                  Tabrams Apr 24, 2009 12:19 PM

                  I was attempting to be a little more provocative than asking what your favorite pairing is.

                  I guess I mean natural in that both partners are generally undisturbed. An oyster is taken from the sea and shucked, and I’ve never had an over-oaked or otherwise spoofed muscadet. What is simpler than that?

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