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How to match wines in groups

You know the scenario, a group of you go out for a meal, you all order something different. But how do you match wine when there are a variety of foods?

There are a few of easy pointers to help you match wine for groups. Complexity is one, balance is another and the last is versatility. I'm not saying you are ever going to get the perfect pair this way, but very few people will drink a bottle to themselves over dinner and compromises abound when out with a group of friends. Group matching is about pleasing most of the people, most of the time. Complexity petit chablis image This seems counter-intuitive, after all food and wine pairings are often about opposites, so when dealing with complexity of flavour in foods you might expect to match with a simple wine. However, the more complexity, the more likely that within the flavour notes of the wine there will be a match with you and your friends dinner. Often complex wines are expensive, but that doesn't have to be the case. Our Petit Chablis Charly Nicolle 2012 is fantastic value for money at £12.99 and is excellent all rounder. Balance Domaine Parigot Hautes Cotes de Beaune 'Clos de la Perriere' 2011 Image No not as in flavour balance, but balance as in the mid point of wine styles. Stay away from light, fresh whites as they will disappear for anyone eating meaty dishes. Also avoid the big heavy reds as they'll drown any seafood or salads. Take the balanced view and dip into rich whites, or light or smooth easy drinking reds. A great example is our Domaine Parigot Hautes Cotes de Beaune 'Clos de la Perriere' 2011, for £21.99. As a pinot noir it is a great match for most savoury dishes that make up the main course.   mas amiel 2011 image Versatility When you get to dessert you really need something versatile, as there are so many flavours in each dessert and then there is the option of cheese just to throw you off. Our Mas Amiel Vintage Maury, 2011 is a dessert wine with a difference. Rich with concentrated fruit and just enough tanin to be pleasing with saltiness of cheese, it also has a hint of herbs and tobacco to cut through rich dishes like crème brûlée. 

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