Wine with sushi? Yes but how ?
Decryption: which wine to choose with sushi
On the menu of sushi restaurants, we inevitably find the famous Japanese beer . Fresh and fruity, with hints of bitterness, it is true that this drink goes perfectly with delicious pieces of raw fish and the sweetness of soy sauce. But we often forget an ideal pairing: wine and sushi .
White wine, red wine or champagne … Everything is allowed, provided you take into account the diversity of aromas felt in the mouth during tasting: salt or sugar - depending on the soy sauce chosen - acidity, with rice in white vinegar and ginger, and power, with wasabi.
The essential white wine
Dry, fatty, mineral, with floral or acid notes, the white wines offer a generous aromatic palette, to be adapted according to each raw fish.
Dry, mineral and fatty white wines will perfectly echo the fatty flesh of tuna or salmon-based sushi. The Riesling d'Alsace, light and spicy, will be an ideal companion. Just like Chablis de Bourgogne, thanks to its fat character. The more daring will opt for the lively and powerful attack of the Sauvignon Blancs.
To accompany delicate white flesh, such as sea bream sashimi, scallop maki or shrimp, a more floral white wine, such as a Côte du Jura in Chardonnay, is preferable - for its subtle aromas of flowers and white flesh - or rarer, in Poulsard Blanc, for its freshness, combined with a hint of acidity.
Finally, to sublimate the more complex flavor of the smoked eel sushi, we will select a Pouilly-fumé. This white wine from the Loire, elegant and fragrant, offers a singular bouquet, described as gunflint, which will perfectly support the powerful flavors of the eel. Its nose also opens on citrus notes, thus giving a nice freshness to the whole.
The original red wine
If white wines are traditionally associated with fish dishes, for fans of red wine, don't worry, a wine pairing based on pinots noirs will have the most beautiful effect on the palate.
Native to Burgundy , this grape variety produces racy and spicy wines, with aromas of red fruits, such as Morello cherries, currants, blackberries, strawberries and even raspberries. A Pinot Noir from Alsace or the Loire, for example, light and tangy, will be the perfect ally for tuna sushi. For lovers of Burgundy, choose a Pinot Noir from the north of the region, provided it is light.
The finesse of a red Anjou on the Cabernet Franc grape variety will also go very well with the pronounced taste of bluefin tuna. Its fruity and spicy character, combined with its freshness and a hint of acidity, will delicately highlight the flavors of tuna, reminiscent of beef.
In general, red wines that are too tannic should be avoided because they will take away from the flavors of raw fish.
The festive champagne
For a big event, or just for fun, why not opt for a Champagne ? The bubbles will bring extra freshness in the mouth and contrast with the fat of the tuna and raw salmon.
Blended rosé champagnes , obtained from a mixture of red wine and white wine, offer a tasty texture, a marked fruitiness and a beautiful liveliness. Among them, the rosés made mainly from Chardonnay will be the most subtle, but also the rarest, and their alliance with nigiri made from tuna and raw salmon will delight the palate. The rosé Champagnes made from pinots noirs will offer a more intense version, with a powerful nose: an ideal marriage with ginger.
You will have to be more careful with so-called “bleeding” rosé champagnes. Resulting from the maceration of black grapes, these sparkling wines are more powerful and vinous. Care should therefore be taken to select a cuvée that is not too tannic or woody. The bluefin tuna will be the most apt to marry this type of champagne.
Not insignificant detail: the pink hues, from pale pink to grenadine, will bring joy and color to a table garnished with a farandole of sushi!
White parenthesis: for festive sushi, based on scallops or langoustine, we will offer a mineral Champagne Blanc de blancs , with notes of white flowers, for an accord imbued with elegance and delicacy.
Finally, pairing wine with sushi is not that complicated!