Wine Pairing with Korean Food

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Happy Wine Wednesday!

Have you ever made Korean food before? Not me!

Once upon a time, my friend Ceci and her family had Rob and I over for a Korean feast. We loved it so much that I suggested we do it again. {Which was essentially inviting myself over. Bad friend!}

But last night, I got to cook my own Korean dish for the first time in my life thanks to Plated! I made us some Beef Bibimbap:

Sooooo not pretty, but oh so good! I’ll be doing my recap and review of Plated on Monday. Our dish was made with marinated flank steak, but here is a general recipe for Bibimbap with ground meat for you.

While eating this dish, I got to thinking…

What kind of wine does one pair with Korean cuisine?

Generally speaking, I’ve used the old standby of slightly sweeter wines with Asian food because the sweet counteracts spicy dishes. But that is like saying there is only one type of wine for European food! And we all know that’s ridiculous thinking.

So I gave it a little bit of thought based on my limited experience with Korean food and did a little research on The Interwebs, as well.

Here is what I discovered:

  • Pairing a sweeter wine with Korean food is a rookie mistake because it takes away from the flavors of the food.
  • Don’t pair with a big, heavy, bold or tannic wine because there are too many flavors already going on with sweet, spicy, umami and fermented components.
  • Korean dishes are served together, often with contrasting flavors, so the wine needs to suit every piece. Something light or palate-cleansing is preferable.

With that, here would be my top wine picks I’d like to try with Korean food:

  • Dry Riesling (I love the ones from Alsace, France!)
  • Dry Rosé
  • Pinot Noir

Nowhere did my research recommend Champagne; but knowing how the dry bubbly is a perfect palate cleanser that can stand up to many strangely textured and hard-to-pair foods, I think it’s one on which I’m willing to gamble, too.

For more info, check out these sources:

Luckily, I now know I can make something Korean, thanks to Plated, which gave me the confidence to do so. And I’ve also learned that we have a Korean Restaurant in the Twin Cities that’s located in the “south of the river” ‘burbs. That way, I don’t have to beg Ceci to invite me over again… 😉

What’s your favorite Korean food?

What wine would you pair with it?

Cheers~
Carrie

 

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One response »

  1. It’s funny but I was actually thinking of a Reisling too! Only slightly sweet with the balance of the spicy food. I’ve never made Korean food at home, but my husband and I go to a Korean BBQ where you grill everything in front of you on this table top grill and they bring you a ton of sides to go with it – its the first time I tried kimchi and I loved it!

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