Choose A Wine To Accompany Lamb Dishes

Lamb chops are cut from the rib, loin, and shoulder areas. They usually include some bone, which tends to improve their flavor. Shoulder chops are usually the least expensive. Lamb chops are often cooked with dry heat, grilled or pan-broiled. Breast of lamb (baby chops) can be baked in the oven. Classic wine pairings for lamb chops include Barolo, the famous Italian wine of kings and king of wines, Cabernet Sauvignon, and Merlot. Other wines that you might consider are an Italian Barbaresco or an aged Spanish Rioja.

Shish kebab is a tasty dish that consists of small cubes of meat and vegetables on a skewer that are grilled or roasted. Lamb is a popular choice. Typical vegetables include bell peppers, eggplant, mushrooms. onions, and tomatoes. Classic wine pairings for lamb shish kebab include the French Bourgueil and Chinon, both from the Loire Valley and Syrah. Other wines to consider include a Spanish Tempranillo or Greek wine. If you go for Greek wine take my advice, stay away from the Retsina if you want to taste the lamb.

Lamb shanks are good value. Because lamb shanks are tough they benefit from long, slow moist cooking. You can braise the shanks up to two days ahead. Once again the classic pairing is Cabernet Sauvignon. You might also want to go with a Barolo, a French Chateauneuf-du-Pape, or a Shiraz. The first two of these are fairly expensive, but you probably saved money on the meat.

Lamb Stew is a traditional Irish dish made with lamb or mutton, potatoes, carrots, onions, and parsley. The longer it cooks, the better it becomes. are good value. By the way, lamb stew is hardly restricted to Ireland. Classic wine pairings include Cabernet Sauvignon (are you seeing a pattern?), Pinot Noir, and Zinfandel. Among other choices are a Chianti or a Beaujolais Cru.

Leg of Lamb is an entire leg. It is usually roasted but may be boiled. Serve it anywhere from rare to well-done and allow about 175-200 grams (4-6 ounces) of meat per person. The classic pairings are the French Bandol or Chateauneuf-du-Pape and an Argentine Malbec. You might also consider a Cabernet Sauvignon if the lamb was cooked with Rosemary or a Zinfandel if cooked with Garlic. If you want to splurge go for a mature wine from the Paulliac region of Bordeaux.

A Crown Roast of Lamb is an excellent gourmet meal, which is quite easy to prepare. The butcher does the hard work for you. But most people won’t know that. By the way, regular roast of lamb makes an excellent meal. The classic pairings include Barolo, the Spanish Ribera del Duero, or a Rose Champagne. Other choices include a Beaujolais Chirboubles. If you’re going with a Crown Roast, make sure to pair it with a fine wine.

Remember, it can be quite worthwhile to spend a little extra time, and perhaps a little extra money to match your wine and food. When in doubt about which wine to accompany a tasty dish, a fine Italian wine is nearly always a good choice.

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