Pairing Wine with Pasta

White plate filled with seafood pasta

The Italians certainly know what they're doing when it comes to food and wine pairings. We've put together a breakdown of traditional pasta dishes paired with some classic wines, and some surprising choices. Buon appetito!

Dishes with tomato-based sauces

These sauces usually contain rich red meat like beef in a bolognaise or sausage in a hearty Ragu. The rich protein balances out the acidity of the tomatoes in the sauce. A tart, medium bodied wine works really well. We recommend Varvaglione Zinfandel Primitivo Del Salento 2017, Monatic Dark Montepulciano D’Abruzzo DOC 2016, or Fontella Chianti DOCG 2019

Dishes with cheese sauces

Whilst many wines pair with cheese there are many different cheeses, and this is the trick to matching wine with your dish. Creamy cheeses like ricotta and mascarpone, frequently used in risottos and cannelloni go really well with fuller-bodied, creamy chardonnays, with a little oak like Domaine Sangouard-Guyot Saint-Veran 2019 La Cote Rotie or even an unoaked, rounder chardonnay such as Catherine & Didier Tripoz Macon Charnay Blanc Clos Des Tournos 2020.

Harder tart cheeses such as pecorino and parmesan work well with lighter, more floral sauvignon type dry white wines like Petrucco Ribolla Gialla 2019 Fruili Colli Orientali DOC or a light pinot noir type red. Try Corte Adami Valpolicella DOC 2019, bursting with fresh raspberry fruit - an excellent complement.