Let’s face it, nothing is more appealing than a warm, cheesy, pizza. What many don’t know, is that it is possible to enhance the enjoyment of the pizza, by pairing it with a great bottle of wine. The problem, however, is that in order for this to be an enjoyable experience, you have to match the right toppings with the right type of wine.
Luckily, we have some experience in this department, and will gladly point you in the right direction.
With a basic pizza, the tomato base is rather dominant and needs a wine that can withstand that oiliness and acidity. For this, we recommend a cool-climate Pinot Noir.
The wine is light enough not to overwhelm the food, and the acidity is able to cut through the fatty cheese.
Pepperoni / Sausage Pizzas
To match the intensity of the pepperoni or sausage, a Syrah would really work really well. Both these elements have some smokiness, which is always nice to pair together. Just carefully consider that a Syrah is more elegant than a Shiraz, which is what you’re looking for. A Shiraz might be too intense and overpower the flavours of the food.
Whether you prefer your Hawaiian with bacon or with ham, the wine you should pair it with should be slightly sweet and fruity. The sweetness will balance out the pork’s saltiness, while also balancing out the pineapple’s acidity. A sweet German Riesling or an Italian Prosecco should be your top two picks!
If you’re loading your pizza up with red meat, you need to match a wine that is able to match the heaviness of the meat. Here, you can apply the ‘red wine with red meat’ rule.
A spicy Shiraz or smoky Cabernet Sauvignon will definitely do the trick!
If you’re heading in the opposite direction by avoiding meat on your pizza, we have the perfect recommendations. Again, you want to match the weight of the toppings with the weight of the wine. If you’re keeping the toppings light, an unoaked Chardonnay or Sauvignon Blanc is your best friend.
Basil is an intensely flavoursome topping and the added tomato increases the acidity of your pizza.
For anyone who enjoys a great rosé, this is the perfect time to get your hands on a bottle. The wine will cut through the intensity of the flavours and the added acidity will help your wine to stand out and make a presence.
The types of fish added to pizzas are generally light and fresh. This is the perfect place to fit in a fresh, crisp Pinot Grigio to your meal. This variety is light enough to accompany the calamari and prawns, and crisp enough to cut through any creaminess from the mussels.
If you’re adding olives to your pizza
Olives are rather pungent and need special consideration when pairing it with wine. A meaty Pinot Noir is lightweight enough to accompany the olives but has intense enough flavours to match the olive flavours.
Whatever your topping of choice, it is vital to choose a wine that suits your preference without compromising the enjoyment of the meal. There are plenty of other toppings to choose from to add to a pizza, but this is a great foundation to work from and really elevate your pizza and wine experience.