As Prosecco in all of its styles continues to dominate the international sparkling wine scene, it’s only natural that wine lovers would ask themselves, what is the perfect Prosecco pairing?
In America, where sweet wines were still immensely popular even a decade ago (and in some corners still are), we tend to think that Prosecco should be paired with dessert.
This is probably because during the time of our parents’ generation, most of the sparkling wine consumed by middle class wine drinkers was sweet Moscato d’Asti.
Today, you still see Americans who serve Prosecco — currently the most popular sparkling wine in the U.S. — with sweet dishes like cakes and pies.
There’s nothing wrong with that, of course. But sweet dishes generally overwhelm any wine. And from a technical point of view, it’s best to avoid sweets when serving or tasting wine.
As the famous New York restaurateur Danny Meyer likes to say, when it comes to wine pairing, a good rule of thumb is if it grows with it, it goes with it.
Whether you’re serving a sweeter style Prosecco or a Prosecco Colfòndo with next to zero residual sugar, the traditional pairing for Prosecco is seafood — salty seafood.
That’s because Prosecco is grown in hills that lie only an hour from Venice where seafood is king. On a clear day, you can see St. Mark’s bell tower from Asolo where the Ferraro family grows its wines.
The natural citrus flavor of classic Prosecco and its gentle bitterness are ideal with flavors of the sea, like the fried calamari and baby octopus in the photo above (that dish, btw, comes from Monterrey Bay in California and it was outstanding!).
Now that doesn’t mean that you can’t serve Prosecco if you don’t have fresh seafood readily available. But in general, try pairing your Prosecco with saltier dishes like prosciutto or pickled or dried fish. If you’ve never paired Prosecco with dishes like that, you’ll be surprised by how well they work together!