Wine consumption is at an all-time high in Canada, with the average Canadian adult drinking about 20 bottles of wine per year. As younger drinkers are shifting away from beer and drinking more vino, the country’s wine culture is expected to grow even more in the new decade, and new wine trends are likely to appear as well. This year, apart from the rise of organic wine, it is expected that uncommon food and wine pairings will reign supreme and will break classic pairing rules such as red wine with meat, white wine with fish or spicy curries, and the like. Change it up in 2020 and try these unusual food and wine pairings.

Shiraz with chicken 

Traditionally, chicken dishes, especially those that are filling and hearty such as stews and roasts, are paired with a white wine such as a fruity Chardonnay. But try pairing chicken with a rich red wine like Shiraz and you’ll see how a bold red wine can elevate the taste of a familiar chicken dish. An Australian red wine such as a Barossa Shiraz or a Shiraz Cabernet are some of the best wines to pair with chicken. Try having a glass with a traditional chicken stew, roast chicken, fried chicken, or a chicken dish with Asian influences, such as a Korean Dak Dori Tang or a Chinese braised chicken stew with mushrooms.

Rose and Indian food

Most people think that it will take a strong, bold wine to stand up to the flavours of Indian food. As the spices commonly used in Indian cuisine such as cumin, garam masala, turmeric, cardamom, and coriander have such distinct flavours, most people think that red wine is the best choice for pairing with a spicy dish. But the next time you make a Tandoori or a curry, pop open a bottle of rose and see how this delicate wine holds up to the bold flavours of your meal. Pick a dry rose like a Syrah or a Grenache, or anything with a hint of acidity so your wine will perfectly complement your food.

Pinot Grigio and cheese pizza

Everyone knows that pizza goes well with an ice-cold beer or a glass of soda, but if you’re having an impromptu pizza party at home, you may want to try serving a perfectly chilled bottle of Pinot Grigio along with your pizza to make it a sophisticated meal. A crisp white wine will pair nicely with any pie, but the cheesier or simpler it is, the better. Instead of ordering a pie with two dozen toppings, try pairing Pinot Grigio with a plain white cheese or a Margherita pizza, made simply with mozzarella cheese, tomatoes, and fresh basil.

This year, throw the rulebook out of the window and experiment with different wine and food pairings to elevate your dining experience. Be adventurous and keep track of your favourite pairings– your unusual food and wine combinations could become a hit in 2020.

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