Gastronomy constantly evolves and the meaning of collective catering is slowly being redefined, mainly as far as the quality and quantity of meals is concerned. The aim of modern gastronomy is not only to satisfy the customer’s hunger but also to create a memorable gastronomic and social experience. In order to achieve this, the meals are prepared from usually fresh ingredients of premium quality with the chef being transformed into a designer in the very last stage of the meal preparation. In order for the experience to be as perfect as possible, the meal is always accompanied by a fine drink – the finest of drinks – WINE.
Save for many beneficial effects on the human body, the wine offers a wide variety of aromas that enhance and supplement various dishes.
It aids digestion, lowers cholesterol and inhibits tumor growth.
It protects against neurological diseases and helps to alleviate stress.
It is the most hygienic of drinks. The selection of wine with food and vice versa is a difficult and responsible task based on subjective perception with the aim to match the meal with wine, thus achieving a perfect harmony. It is necessary to know the character of wine as well as its content and the procedure used in preparation of particular dish. The most important aspect is, of course, the wish of the guest, whom we try to please in the first place.
Some general recommendations:
When trying to match wine with a significantly aromatic dish, it is recommended to choose a wine from a less aromatic variety, not too dull however.
Sweet and salty tastes complement each other (e.g. salt a common ingredient in sweet creams for pastry)
Sour and sweet tastes are contrasting, however when used in a proper ratio, they are capable of creating a perfect unison (e.g. dressing – sugar + vinegar)
Sweet taste of food may be complemented with a sweeter wine, however, this is not true of sour food and sour wine.
Light and simple meals should be complemented with wines of similar character with lower alcohol content.
Complex dishes, served with a strong sauce require wines that are fuller and more complex.
Dishes as well as wines are seasonal. Younger, fresh white wines are drank in spring and summer, red wines and aged white wines in autumn and winter.
What to avoid
Inappropriate tempering of the wine. Each variety needs different approach at different temperatures.
Choosing a wrong glass. If we really want to achieve the perfect wine drinking experience, it is important to choose the right shape of the glass in order to achieve proper opening of all aromatic substances.
Wines do not go well with foods that contain higher amounts of vinegar.
Salt water or anything that contains salt water is totally incompatible with red wine.
Chocolate and thick cream desserts create a coating on the tongue, therefore we have to choose a wine with higher alcohol content or sparkling wine.
Spicy foods do not go well with wines that have a higher content of hard acids.
Let’s not forget that wines contain alcohol, therefore we should drink in moderation, taking small sips in order to enjoy the beauty of this natural drink to the fullest.
Currently, a notion to completely liberalize wine pairing prevails. Let’s allow the customer the freedom to choose as he or she pleases.
Wine is always served before meals.
Sparkling wines may be decanted. It is recommended to to use appropriate carafes that are tall and sleek, preferably with an enclosure. Decanting is done with older wines mainly to aerate, eventually to separate the sediment.
Tools: cooler (filled to 1/3 with ice water), paten for the wine cooler with a serviette, two coasters with rosettes, three towels, cork screw, well picked glass, tasting glass, sommelier apron
Proper temperature of sparkling wine:
Tools: tubus, two towels, cork screw, two coasters with rosettes, well picked glasses and tasting glass for sommelier, sommelier apron
The service of rosé is similar to the service of white wine. Eventually it is possible to add a few ice cubes to the tubus in order to cool it. We use a special kind of glasses for rosé – tulip glasses.
Tools: same as with service of white wine, narrower carafe as for red wine, cooler with ice and paten for the wine cooler with a serviette, candle in a candle holder and matches.
Sediment – the sediment in the wine consists of wine stone, acids, mineral substances and loose coloring.
Decanting is done with red wines, white wines as well as older sects – champagnes.
Tools: Bottle in a decanting holder or basket, two coasters with rosettes, two towels, carafe, candle in a candle holder, matches, cork screw, apron, proper glass for red wine.
Guided degustation takes place at various events: when assessing new wines, to rate wines at competitions, as part of various events, in discovery and selection of wines.
For a professional guided degustation, the taster must be certified as having passed the degustation exams.
A professionally guided degustation takes place preferably in the morning hours, when the senses are well rested.
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