I’ll admit, my mom (a Bay Area transplant) had to remind me the 49’ers were in the Super Bowl and I had to google the opponent. Clearly, I attend Super Bowl parties for the wine and food (in that order). After a quick scan of internet articles, I know I am not alone. As luck would have it, this year both teams hail from wine country, so I’m already more interested this year than ever before. In doing research for this article, I've discovered the NFL and wine are more connected than I thought.
I know beer is the traditional favorite, but If you’re hosting friends this Sunday, consider a few of our wine suggestions to pair with popular Super Bowl favorites, gleaned from the 50 Best Super Bowl Foods according to the Today Show.
Let's start with wings - our nation will consume 1.4 billion (!) chicken wings on Sunday. After you recover from the shock of that statement, ‘what wine will I serve with the wings?’ will be the pressing matter at hand. Cheers to Missouri and their German wine growing roots! Riesling is extremely versatile due to its intense, fruity aromas, high acidity and low ABV. It will brighten a heavy wing sauce and cool a spicy one. Frying mozzarella sticks and jalapeño poppers? Great! Think of riesling as the lemon you so desperately want to squeeze on salty, fried food. It also complements the assortment of dips on the table – guac, spinach artichoke, caramelized onion-bacon…you get the point - If you are looking for just one wine to serve this Sunday, riesling is your gal! For a little variety, Albariño or Sauvignon Blanc will work here as well. Added bonus – white wine doesn’t stain the carpet or your favorite jersey. These parties can get rowdy, even for innocent wine-drinking bystanders.
After eating their body weight in chips and dip, most people beeline for the meat: bacon-wrapped Lil’Smokies, pulled pork tacos, chili, meatballs. Hat tip to Napa and their outstanding Cabernet and Merlot wines. These are familiar, crowd-pleasing favorites that will elevate your pork dishes and take your chili, burgers and ribs to the next level. If you want to stick with white wine (see aforementioned warning!), check out this article on California Chardonnay pairings from appy’s to main dishes!
May the wine & food be outstanding, the commercials & half-time show top notch, the Clydesdales adorable and may the best Wine Country win!