In honor of the Ballard Seafood Fest which took place at the end of July, here are some seafood & wine pairing tips:
Crustaceons (ex: Dungeness Crab)
These little guys tend to be higher in fat and served with lots of butter, so go with a richer white such as Burgundy, especially Chablis (try: Pascal Bouchard 2006 Grande Reserve Chablis $22) or a richer New World white (try: Airfield 2007 Thunderbolt Sauvignon Blanc/Semillon $16.50) or for a little bit crisper white (and to be adventurous) go for an Austrian Gruener Veltliner, a food-friendly white with tropical fruit flavors and the zing of white pepper (try: Leth 2008 Gruener Veltliner Steinagrund $20).
Lean fish (ex: Sole)
This type of fish tends to be delicate and its flavors can be overwhelmed, so go easy on it with a light, crisp white such as Albariño, the classic Spanish fish wine from the NW region of Rias Baixas (try: Nessa 2008 Albariño $16) or a nice Sauvignon Blanc from the Loire Valley, another classic white fish pairing (try: Philippe Raimbault 2007 Sancerre Apud Sariacum $34).
Medium-fat fish (ex: Halibut)
Halibut is firmer and a little richer in flavor and would pair beautifully with the buttery, toasty flavors of a well-done California Chardonnay (try: Heitz Cellar 2007 Chardonnay $23) or a dryer style Chenin Blanc (try: Benedicte De Rycke 2004 Jasnieres $28).
High-fat fish (ex: Salmon & Tuna)
Both of these are fatty, full-flavored, relatively firm fish that call for a wine that can hold its own against these stronger flavors. We recommend a full-bodied white, a rosé or a lighter red. A medium-bodied Spanish Tempranillo would be delicious (try: Hacienda Don Ramon 2006 Rioja $17) or a Pinot Noir from Oregon (try: Walnut City Wineworks 2007 Pinot Noir $22).
Enjoy the Seafood Fest and stop by for glass of wine and something good to eat (try: Porcini-encrusted scallops or Shrimp with chorizo, garlic & butter). Both are on our menu right now.