A Guide To Wine And Italian Food Pairings

Check out our guide for pairing wine and Italian food!

Check out our guide for pairing wine and Italian food!

When it comes to pairing wine and food, there are no strict rules, as you are always free to drink whatever you prefer. However, there are some helpful tips for pairing wine with Italian food to ensure your drink contributes to the flavors of your dish, rather than over-power it. Continue reading for a quick and easy guide to pairing wine and Italian food for the most delicious meal possible!

Richness and Taste

The first step of pairing wine and food is to look for similarities in richness and texture. Also, try to balance tastes between your wine and meal, as salty or sour food will make wines taste fruitier and less acidic, while sweet and savory dishes may make wine taste stronger and drier. An example of a pairing that has a similar richness and a balanced taste is an acidic wine such as Chianti paired with a tangy, tomato pasta with Parmigiano cheese.


Acidity is also important, as you want to balance the acidity of the food with the wine. Citric-based foods, such as lemon chicken, pair best with a Pinot Grigio. When it’s time for dessert, such as a biscotti, drink a sweet wine such as a Vin Santo. The key rule here is always to drink wine that is just as sweet or sweeter than your meal.

Red Wines

When it comes to pasta, the majority of red wines pair best with tomato-based red sauces. Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, and Zinfandel wines are hearty and rich and go well with thick red sauces. However, other red wines, such as Pinot Noir and Sangiovese, can be paired with red, white, or oil-based sauces, as they have a more versatile taste. You may have also heard that seafood must only be paired with white wines, but a few reds, such as Chianti, are diverse enough to complement a seafood dinner.

White Wines

As for white wines, most pair best with white and oil-based sauces, as well as seafood. Riesling is typically a sweet wine that pairs well with cream-based sauces, while Pinot Grigio and Chardonnay can be paired with light tomato sauces as well.

Authentic Italian Cuisine From Giolitti Deli

Giolitti Deli is a full-service Delicatessen in Annapolis, MD, specializing in authentic Italian cuisine. Founded in 1992, we use the freshest ingredients to make time-honed recipes from scratch, with no MSG or preservatives. We believe in real food and offer many healthy options, including vegetarian and vegan menu items. At Giolitti Deli, we make our own sauces, mozzarella, grilled and roasted vegetables, bread, pizza dough, and desserts, and our sandwiches, salads, pasta, pizza, and entrees are made to order. Owner Mary Giolitti has combined her passion for great food and fine wine to offer Annapolis a true taste of Italy!

Team members who also make the business possible include Manager Kathy Hunter, Manager and Catering Director Cheryl Molesky, Head Baker Porfirio Diaz, Chef Alfredo Escobar, and Deli Manager Noe Merino. To contact us, please visit our contact page or give us a call at 410.266.8600. Also, be sure to keep up with us on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, and our blog!

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