Today, I’m going to share a wine and food paring experience blending two different regions of the world. It was just about 10 years ago when I was first introduced to Thai food. I was instantly drawn to the complexity of the cuisine with richness in spice and texture. Likewise, my exposure to wines from the South America started 5 years ago when I began my official journey into wine education. You’ll have to admit that Thai food and South America wines isn’t the first thing that springs to mind when considering your favorite parings.

The local chapter of Dallas Women for Winesense recently hosted an event that paired the complexities of Northeastern Thai food with the equally diverse terroir of South American wines. Women for Winesense is an organization started in 1990 to educate the public on wine varietals, the regions that they are grown in and pairing wine with foods. Wine professionals and aficionados alike meet across the country to share information, network and have a great time in the company of good wines. We also have quite a few men who are active members of the organization.

4 wines were selected for the group to enjoy:

  1. Pascual Toso Sparkling Brut from Argentina,
  2. Bodega Garzón’s Albariño from Uruguay,
  3. A Malbec from the Decero winery,
  4. and we finished up with Lapostolle Carmenere.

My blog today will focus on the Albariño varietal – a deliciously crisp white wine that should be on your spring and summer list to pair with lighter seafoods, salads and other warm weather cuisines.

Uruguay is the fourth largest wine producing country in South America. Grapes arrived with the Spaniards in the early 1600s. Winemaking on a wide commercial scale for global consumption didn’t come to the forefront until the 1970s. The Bodega Garzón winery enjoys temperate climates with winds from the Atlantic Ocean and exceptional terroir at a facility quickly becoming known for sustainable agricultural practices.

Bodega Garzón and Papaya Salad

While red grapes have historically been the top producer in the country, the Albariño single vineyard from Garzón is a deliciously light white wine with a nose of white flowers and citrus. The palate is crisp with a touch of salinity and chorus of citrus. The Garzón Albariño has a round body, medium acidity and minerality with a yellow straw color in the glass. This wine is fermented in concrete tanks and aged in untoasted French oak for 3-6 months before bottling.Second photo Albarino with papya salad

Our hosts at Bambu Asian Cuisine restaurant in Richardson, TX paired the Albariño with a salad featuring shredded papaya, tomatoes, carrots, peanuts, dried shrimp and Thai chili pepper arranged in a zesty lime-citrus dressing red cabbage shell. The salinity and citrus flavors of the Albariño balanced exceptionally well with the sweetness and slight spice of the salad. Bambu is known for their use of fresh ingredients as well as honoring the traditions of preparing Northeastern Isaan Thai foods.

Had you asked me two weeks ago if I would pair Thai food with wines from South America, I may have been stumped to find suitable partners. I like taking adventures with my food and wine pairings. The Dallas leadership with Women for Winesense never cease to find creative ways to make an evening wine education event exciting.

You may need to ask your local wine shop owner to locate a case of this wine for you. At $25 per bottle, this is a wine that I would recommend you stocking up on for the spring and summer months.

Remember to drink what it is that makes you truly happy and always think positively!

Drink Responsibly!

@bodegagarzon @blackwinelovers @uruguaywine

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