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Seasonal supping!

Our seasonal food & wine tips received a great response last week, so here are some more!

Samphire adds colour and interest particularly to fish recipes, it has a distinctive salty tang and a wine perfect for that taste of the sea is Picpoul de Pinet from the Languedoc. Fresh and zingy, Picpoul works well with lots of fish dishes particularly those that are salty – we love to serve it with oysters. Ask your fishmonger to show you the best way to shuck them yourself, or if you don’t want to do this (and are eating them quickly), ask them to shuck them for you – you just don’t want to lose all of those lovely juices. Cook samphire as if cooking asparagus, for now more than 3 minutes. Keep the bright green colour by refreshing in some ice water.

Squid, saffron, and chorizo – Albarino wine from Northern Spain (or Alvarinho from Northern Portugal) has become a must-have wine on a restaurant wine list. It has great affinity with fish but it is not a thin acidic wine, it has a good amount of body, which means that it stands up to dishes with more texture and interest such as this simple squid salad.

We love gooseberries and rhubarb, but they are tricky when matching with wine as they both have a sour-sweet quality. With puddings you really have to select a sweet wine, as the sweetness in the pudding will make any wine seem drier.

A great choice to go with gooseberries is Muscat de Beaumes de Venise from the Rhone area of Southern France – these sweet wines are full of interesting, exotic, fruity flavours and often have a hint of orange, which means it would also work with the Rhubarb and orange jelly.

Another wine worth trying with the jelly is an Italian Moscato, these wines are low in alcohol, have a slight fizz and their light summery flavours would be a great match for this pretty, subtle jelly.

Thanks to Gwen McCann from House of Wine for her suggestions – do try these dishes & some of these great wines to go with them!