I’ve never understood brussel sprouts. Oh, they’re delicious, roasted in a cast iron pan with big hunks of garlic. But I’ve tried reds, and I’ve tried whites. Neither seems to pair all that well. And wouldn’t you know it? Brussel sprouts are a footnote on this incredible infographic: Foods that don’t pair well with wine. Off to beer, I guess.
Other than this one misstep, Pairing Wine & Food is like a tube map for your gullet. Published by Wine Folly, its an easily digestible chart, connecting various foods with their best respective wine types. Notice the general progression of color and flavor that work to the eye, but also on a subconscious, salivary level. (Dry white wine isn’t green, of course, but the flavor is bright, even tart, like an under-ripe piece of fruit.)
Of course, even if you memorize all of the wine wisdom in this chart, you still may not agree in practice. That’s what makes it fun. For instance, I find a light enough red can pair wonderfully with pretty much anything, especially soft, stinky cheese. And status quo be damned, pairing Port with a sweet dessert is lunacy. Cloyingly sweet on sweet? Blech.