Loire Valley Wines Take the Spicy Thai Challenge #Winophiles

Testing sweet Loire Valley wines with spicy Thai green curry

Testing sweet Loire Valley wines with spicy Thai green curry

#Winophiles Go All Cross-Cultural
“What grows together goes together”.  This time-honored advice for wine and food pairing is one we often follow in our regional explorations with our #Winophiles group.  What about all those great dishes from other parts of the world? Especially the ones without wine grapes growing nearby, or even without a wine culture to speak of? This month, our group is tackling cross-cultural food pairings with French wines. You’re sure to find something tasty to try, so join us! Take a look toward the bottom of this post to see all the great ideas offered by my fellow #Winophiles!

Sweet Wines for Spicy Foods
Julie (beautiful wife) has been suggesting I incorporate take-out into my posts for some time. I love to cook, but in the real world, people want good ideas for wines with food they grab on the way home from work. This week I’m recently home from a trip to France (much more on that later!) and pressed for time, so I decided to finally take her sage advice. Takeout on FoodWineClick!? You betcha! Our challenge today is choosing a French wine to pair with spicy Thai food.

What’s your favorite spicy Thai dish? Green Curry “Spry and Jungly” was delicious

Naviya’s Thai Brasserie in Linden Hills neighborhood of Minneapolis
Our favorite local Thai restaurant is Naviya’s Thai Brasserie in the Linden Hills neighborhood in Minneapolis. My dinner today consists of shrimp and chicken spring rolls (not spicy, easy pairing there) and Green Curry “Spry and Jungly” with duck as the protein. Here’s how Naviya describes the dish:

Michel Picard Vouvray AOP (demi-sec) 2014 ($15 at Surdyk’s)
Eye: Clear, pale lemon color
Nose: Clean, a bit of beeswax and lemons, a nice depth to the aroma.
Mouth: Off dry, high lip-smacking acidity. Medium body with flavors of lemon curd and a bit of beeswax. Very refreshing with the sweetness well offset by the acidity.

Coteaux du Layon
The Layon river is a small tributary flowing into the Loire. The local weather conditions in the fall favor the development of botrytis, or noble rot. This fungus dehydrates the ripe grapes, concentrating the flavors and adding more due to the rot. While it sounds gross, the results are beautiful! The botrytis doesn’t form every year, so these wines don’t carry the reputation of the famous Sauternes wines of Bordeaux. They also don’t carry the pricetag!

Chateau de la Roulerie Coteaux du Layon AOC 2014 ($19 at Surdyk’s)
Eye: Clear, a very pretty deep lemon color.
Nose: Clean, medium intensity nose of rich orange peel, beeswax and honey
Mouth: Sweet, very full body with bracing, lip-smacking refreshing acidity.

Vouvray (demi-sec) is a great choice with spicy Thai food

The better pairing came from the Vouvray.

Wine Pairing Winner with Spicy Thai: Go for the Vouvray!
Going for spicy Thai takeout? Grab a bottle of Vouvray and you’ll be happy. The medium body, lightly sweet with bracing acidity was a nice foil for the rich coconut milk and Thai peppers.  The Coteaux du Layon was just a bit too much. Too much unctuous body, too much sweetness, it just didn’t work.  However, it did make a great cap to the meal as a light dessert wine all on its’ own.

Coteaux du Layon shows a beautiful deep lemon yellow in the glass

No worries, you can enjoy the Coteaux du Layon for dessert. I did!

Cross-Cultural Wine Pairings from our #Winophiles Group
If you see this post early enough, please join our chat on twitter! Saturday April 15 at 10am CDT, we’ll chat using the hashtag: #Winophiles. We love visitors, no blog needed!

Comments
20 Responses to “Loire Valley Wines Take the Spicy Thai Challenge #Winophiles”
  1. Lynda Seasly says:

    Thanks Jeff! I do love Thai food, Tom not so much. My favorite is Masaman curry shrimp, a sweet curry. I’ll take your suggestions for wine. Great idea to help us with take-out suggestions!

  2. For some reason it is hard for me to feature take out in my articles as well. I had to resort to it last month for #WinePW. However, in reading your article it is evident take out or not it does not diminish the pairing in any way. Sounds lovely. I too would enjoy Vouvray with Spicy Thai. Welcome home. I cannot wait to read about your trip!

  3. I’ve enjoyed Vouvray with Thai before. And you’re right it’s a winner. Spicy does indeed like sweet! Cheers!

  4. I think your wife is on to something – we all fall back on take-out when we’re swamped! Love that you featured Chenin Blanc – it seems to slip under the radar when people think of white wine, which is a shame. And the color on that Coteaux du Layon is gorgeous!

  5. I just stumbled upon your blog. Great reading! I can’t wait to read more posts!

  6. kupers says:

    First, I find it fantastic that you turn the spotlight on chenin blanc, a variety that reserves more love. Second, it is just awesome that you look at residual sugar chenin blanc, which is still so neglected, but especially when it comes to food and wine pairend, so incredible, great tips!

  7. Jane says:

    Good Vouvray buying tips for the sweetness levels. Off-dry with good acidity sounds like a Vouvray I’d like to try. Great photos and information as always. Cheers!

  8. lgowdy says:

    Great discussion about Vouvray and Coteaux du Layon Jeff. I tend to turn to Riesling or sparkling Rosé- this is a great reminder that the Loire holds gems for spice!

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