Fast Food Slow Wine

There is no pairing more sublime than French Fries and Rosé . I CHALLENGE you. Name one! But what about all the other fast food things? Fine dining is well and good but don’t poor decisions deserve fine drinks too? Fast Food Slow Wine will be a recurring foray into how to highbrow/lowbrow mash-up your grease life. In addition to profound pairings, each fast dining establishment will have a fries/whatever-the-potato-thingy-is rating at the end. In this troubled world, fried spuds are a touchstone for the masses and my appetite for fries is nothing if not massive. Oh, and the place that gives me mayo AND ketchup for fries? I cannot wait for you dream child. Two disclaimers: 1. I don’t eat meat but will be getting close proximities and wrapping my carnivorous friends into tasting with me. 2. I got it all delivery—please don’t bring wine into a McDonald’s. Unless you have express permission but—fast food is for irresponsible late-night food delivery anyway so… I had to start with the GOAT: McDonalds. I paired for all three meals plus one dessert. I believe in a well-balanced booze day. Albeit I ate all these things around midnight. I am a vampire (with a garlic-tolerant gene). Let’s go! ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------ LE MCMENU Petit Déjuener: 1. MCMUFFIN À EGG AND CHEESE, PACKET “MEXICAN STYLE SALSA” HASH BROWNS, DEUX - Bisol 1542 Jeio Valdobbiadene Prosecco Superiore DOCG 2. MCGRIDDLE SANS MEAT, MAPLE SYRUP - Prosecco i Aperol Bubbles are the ticket for eggy-cheesy and fried potato things, as it can cut through the fat. But true Champagne might overwhelm. I decided on a step-up from regular ol’ Prosecco, procuring a Superiore from the recently announced UNESCO World Heritage Site Conegliano-Valdobbiadene. It is plush on the palate with just a hint of bread, bits of peach purée and something that made me think of daisies. Cuts through the Mc-nonsense. But I knew I’d have to switch it up for the McGriddle. That sandwich throws in an element of much-more-sweet that wanted yet sweeter. And finally! I found a place for Aperol. I am an Aperol Spritz naysayer because it is not enough of…any flavor or sweetness or tartness for me. Like LaCroix. Throwing that shade left and right I am. BUT! With the slightly sweet McGriddle I recommend ½-1 oz. Aperol per 3 ounces of that Prosecco you were using for the McMuffin. The sweet-bitter orange of Aperol pairs fantastically with the sweet-savory of a McGriddle. Bonus points if you garnish with an orange rind. Gold star if you flame it. Finally, I cracked the Aperol-denier code. I may have to retire. But first lunch. Déjuener: 1. SOUTHWEST SALAD SANS CHICKEN FRIES MAIS OUI - Feudi Di San Gregorio Falanghina 2017 Southwest salad wanted a richer white, yet saline, with good acid. Enter Falanghina. You don’t know it because hey it ain’t everywhere. But it is full and salty and refreshing. The salt and citrus are cool with the Southwest flavor and the (of course) fry action. Because yah it’s lunch but can you get a meal at McDonald’s without some sort of fried potato? Rhetorical question. Dîner: 1. BIG MAC SANS BURGER LE FRIES: KETCHUP, SWEET AND SOUR, HONEY MUSTARD - Frank Family Vineyards Napa Valley Zinfandel 2016 2. LE FRIES DEUX: RANCH, SPICY BUFFALO - Ecco Domini Special Edition Bobby Berk Pinot Grigio 2018 The reason for fries take deux is that I surmised some people go with burgers and some go with McNuggets (apologies to not tackling fish filet!). And what pairs with McNuggets rides on the sauce. As for the un-burger: in terms of McDonalds I think meat is likely the least important sandwich factor. In my meatless Mac—I tasted that combination of the tiny cloying diced onions and the right balance of ketchup, sauce, and pickles adding zing. And then there is the mildly-sweet bun. The richness of Zinfandel does well with the liminal sweet of it all. So I highly recommend upper-end Zin if Zin is your jam. Also can someone please make me a Zin jam? My toast is lonely. But then! What if you or your NuggetHead companion went with Spicy Buffalo or Ranch? Pinot Grigio is the key. Hear me out. Okay fine the BBQ feels sweet AND spicy but it called for something with some fruit and acid to its name and Ecco Domini has those things. Plus! It pairs well with the ranch because Pinot Grigio has a lees-y lactic character that bridges pleasantly. Le Dessert: 1. VANILLA MILKSHAKE, SOUPÇON WHIPPED CREAM - El Maestro Sierra Pedro Ximenez , pourover Pedro Ximenez is a sherry. Picked when the grapes have a shade of sweet raisin on them and aged in exacting circumstances and there is additional booze added just to elevate the party. And then you go crazy and pour a dollop into your vanilla shake your crazy hedonist you. You’re living right. So that’s it! I had a smidge too much fun researching this and hope you have just as much fun taking my advice—and do write back and tell me how it goes! Now for the truly important things: the Tater Tally and Shower Wine TATER TALLY: Hashbrowns: 20/10 McDonald’s hash browns are life and don’t you forget it. Fries: 18/10 only because they lose tastiness when they cool down faster. SHOWER WINE: Ewww. Do not take your edibles into the bathroom with you. But do take the Prosecco with you. Why not? If you’ve gone so far as pairing wine with fast food might as well enjoy it with the other affordable luxury: a nice hot shower. ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------ Want to read more from Ellen? Check out her recent articles: So You Wanna Be a Wine Nerd: The Blind Taste The Cans of Summer 2019 Old World vs. New World Round Seven: Viognier! Summer Cocktails: Sparkling not Spritzing Up Your Life Old World vs. New World Round Six: Syrah! May Day! May Day! Emergency Drinks in Dire Straits Pink Wine, Pink Wine Everywhere But Is It Vegan? You can also listen to Ellen's podcast with Shaughn Buchholz, The Wine Situation here .

El Maestro Sierra

Pedro Ximénez

Trust me — 23 days ago

Greg, David and 17 others liked this
MaJ CappS

MaJ CappS Influencer Badge

Soooooo gooooooood....

Feudi di San Gregorio

Campania Falanghina 2017

So before the following I am gonna tell you how well this pairs with southwest salad and potatoes that have had some Funtime in hot oil. It isn’t quite a unicorn but at least a mermaid wine. It can sing and swim. Maybe it has legs AND fins—take that Ariel deniers. Anyway. Should I be proper? On the nose a lot of salt and baked stone fruit and apple juice. On the palate a body not quite voluptuous but not quite not. Lemons (baked stewed raw and candied) and hint of salad green barely ripe peach medium plus acid. Alcohol I am guessing is...12.5. Maybe 13 but...checked label it says it is 13. Snazzy. This wine is good with the slightly spicy southwest flavors but also chill with salad so that’s cool. I also served this at thanksgiving earlier this year because it can be friends with most dishes. Falanghina does a great service to food. — 2 months ago

Severn, Daniel P. and 13 others liked this
Ellen Clifford

Ellen Clifford Influencer Badge Premium Badge

It’s SO fun
MaJ CappS

MaJ CappS Influencer Badge

Love this producer! Snazzy indeed.
Ellen Clifford

Ellen Clifford Influencer Badge Premium Badge

@MaJ CappS YAS! They are so good

Ecco Domani

Limited Edition Bobby Berk Pinot Grigio 2018

There comes a time when Pinot Grigio is the correct thing — 23 days ago

Paul, Greg and 16 others liked this
Paul T- Huntington Beach

Paul T- Huntington Beach

Habanero Ranch was discontinued at McDonald’s,
Dominos has habanero mango sauce packs,

Bisol

Jeio Brut Prosecco di Valdobbiadene Superiore

Pre-fastfood-pairing: citrus fun on the nose. Plush AF bubbles. I’m impressed. The Valdobbiadene Prosecco wines level up. Dried apricot and a hint of white wonder bread (in the best possible way I never had that as a kid except at communion—do I see religion in this wine?) and a..,well the texture hangs with me.
Update: does well with hash browns as bubbles and fried things are friends. And eggs and cheese. And the latent sweetness of an English muffin. Woot, etc
— a month ago

Severn, Sharon and 19 others liked this

Frank Family Vineyards

Napa Valley Zinfandel 2016

This is a very sophisticated Zin. Sophisticated as in raised-on-classical-but-moved-to-big-city-and-got-into-BillieEilish-but-go- waltzing-for-fun way. Shall I be textbook? Let’s.
Eye: medium ruby red thick big ol’ tears
Nose: leaps out! Licorice red/blue/black fruit but mostly like stewed dried cranberries and spice and vanilla bean
Tongue (mine) dry, medium acid, medium plush ripe tannins, high booze level (checking to see if I was correct)ohhhh 14.8! So yeah high abv.
Body is medium plus. Intensity medium plus. It’s all ripe and raisined purple plum, black cherries, blackberries and all of these fruits are dried and ripe plus a handful of blueberries and a slosh of vanilla bean liqueur and some allspice or even...velvet falernum. Finish is medium plus.
This is a Zin I want in my life forevs
— a month ago

Daniel, Stuart and 22 others liked this
Dennis P.

Dennis P.

@Ellen Clifford you have a way of writing reviews as if I'm hearing you speak in person. Very talented in a quirky way. An enjoyable read.