Five Wine Pairings for Springtime Produce

Spring has officially sprung, and with it blossoms a renewed cornucopia of produce. On your next trip to the farmer’s market, you’ll find a bevvy of spring delicacies ripe for an evening in the kitchen. What wines should you pair with your springtime bounty? Here are five pairings to try with the vegetables and mushrooms in season. Asparagus & Grüner Veltliner Vegetables as a whole can present wine pairing conundrums, but none more famously gives sommeliers a headache than asparagus. With its distinctive, slightly bitter and, well, “vegetal” character, asparagus holds the power to make a wine taste off-kilter. One answer? Pair like-with-like and try Grüner Veltliner . Like asparagus, Austria’s signature grape exudes green flavors – often evoking tasting notes such as “string beans.” Grüner’s taut, tactile structure further complements asparagus’ stringy and sometimes tough texture. Fiddlehead Ferns & Blanc de Blancs These spiral-shaped fronds enjoy a frustratingly short season, but they add an element of whimsy to any spring dish. The flavor of fiddlehead ferns is often described as a milder, earthier version of asparagus. Go for something crisp, but slightly nutty – like Blanc de Blancs Champagne . The Chardonnay-based sparkler balances an almost cloudlike lightness with leesier, “patisserie”-like flavors. Give the fiddlehead ferns a light sauté, and the pairing will be hard to resist. English Peas & Kabinett Riesling Depending on how you look at it, the act of shucking English peas can either offer catharsis or stir up anxiety in a seemingly endless task. Regardless, it’s hard to deny the gratification fresh peas can provide – a far, far cry from their frozen counterparts. When cooked, these legumes present a subtle sweetness. Try pairing with a crisp Kabinett Riesling . The lightest in body of Germany’s wine classification pyramid, Kabinetts have just enough sweetness to match a bowl of peas without overpowering them. Morels & Burgundy White truffles may monopolize your autumnal gastronomic fantasies, but come spring the celebrated mushrooms of the season are morels. The growing patterns of these honeycomb-textured delicacies continue to evade scientists, making commercial morel production nearly impossible. For such an elusive mushroom, with nuanced, earthy flavors – a natural match is red Burgundy . Like morels, great red Burgundy is tinged with a sense of mystery – its subtle, savory tones ephemeral and constantly evolving. Plus, with something as decadent as morels, you deserve to indulge with a glass of something special. Rhubarb and Lambrusco Rhubarb begins to come into season in early spring, and those with a sweet tooth most famously associate the plant with dessert. Indeed rhubarb’s edible stalks provide a lip-puckeringly sour flavor that’s best tempered with a bit of sugar. As always with dessert, it’s best to drink sweet as well. Consider enjoying a slice of rhubarb pie with a glass of Lambrusco . This holds especially true should the recipe also involve strawberries – a common tasting note for this red Italian sparkler. While drier versions of the wine have come into fashion, stick with one labeled “Amabile” to match the sweetness of the dish. — Bryce Wiatrak Have you visited the farmer’s market recently? We want to see how you’re pairing! Scan a label or search by name to add your tasting notes on Delectable.

Prager

Wachstum Bodenstein Smaragd Grüner Veltliner 2013

Baller Gruner, notes of honey, kaffir lime, fresh flowers, fresh pears, subtle toast, with bracing acidity and a laser like finish. Still a baby but enjoyable now, better in 5-7 and beyond! — 4 years ago

Michael, LM and 1 other liked this

Willi Schaefer

Graacher Domprobst Kabinett Riesling 2011

Quinine & Minerals. About 40 minutes in some tangerine peel and muted peach joined in. That being said, while this was enjoyable, it still needs a few years. I say that lovingly. — 5 years ago

shiri liked this

Domaine Bruno Clair

"Les Grasses Têtes" Marsannay Pinot Noir 2012

Very feminine and light bodied. Wonderful seafood compliment for even lighter flakey fish. Lots of acid and floral components. Dusty potting soil like earth with a lengthy cedar finish. Pretty and classic burgundy. — 4 years ago

David, Velma and 3 others liked this

Veyder-Malberg

Wachauer Liebedich Grüner Veltliner 2015

Crazy energy, electric and energizing on the palate. Tart apple, grapefruit, crisp yellow plum, hint of white peach, crushed chalk and sponti/yeasty funk (?). There's a distinct saline note, crisp and focused throughout. Finish is a melange of pepper spice and pleasant astringency mixed with citrus zest. This wine always brings so much to the table for the price. Much more purity of fruit and rock than last vintage. — 3 years ago

Ira and Matthew liked this

Ruinart

Brut Blanc de Blancs Champagne Chardonnay

Casey Curbow
9.4

All at once rich, delicate, precise, intense. Lemon curd and crisp apple, grilled oyster shell and crushed chalk, almond milk. Fine mousse with balanced minerality, pure expressive fruit, integrated acid, and impressive width and length. Something to say for the big houses. — 3 years ago

Gerald Montoya
with Gerald
Gerald, Chris and 10 others liked this
Gerald Montoya

Gerald Montoya Influencer Badge

Intense, broad, focused and long. Beautiful rich, ripe lemon and subtle underripe pear riding on broad minerality of saline, stones, and chalk. Great texture and serious length.
9.2
Ira Schwartz

Ira Schwartz Influencer Badge Premium Badge

Had it last night , you beat me to posting and your note is spot on.
Casey Curbow

Casey Curbow Influencer Badge

Belated cheers @Ira Schwartz. @Gerald Montoya and I certainly enjoyed it.

Cleto Chiarli

Amabile Lambrusco Grasparossa di Castelvetro Lambrusco

Concord grape, candied pomegranate, cherry vanilla soda, and touch of dark plum peel on the finish. — 3 years ago

Peter liked this

Joh. Jos. Prüm

Graacher Himmelreich Kabinett Riesling 2012

Medium lemon color. Pretty closed nose. Nice and delicate wet stones, white flowers, tangerines, pineapples, light cream and honey. Tons of minerals and honey on the palate, nice structure with good acidity. Definition of elegance. Will benefit for aging. 10% alc. 2012 vintage — 3 years ago

Ira, Brian and 23 others liked this

Agrapart & Fils (Pascal Agrapart)

Terroirs Grand Cru Extra Brut Blanc de Blancs Champagne

An excellent small grower/producer from #Avize whose wines are consistently fine quality and very appealing. "Terroirs" is presumably a blend of fruit sourced from various sites that express various terroirs, and this lovely #BlancdeBlancs shows wonderful complexity. It seemed quite dry so one assumes the dosage does not exceed 3-4 grams. An excellent #aperitif wine that also carried itself well throughout the meal. #AgrapartetFils — 4 years ago

Anthony, David and 1 other liked this

Alain Hudelot-Noellat

Chambolle-Musigny Pinot Noir 2014

Young tight. But opens up to lovely exotic aromas of sandlewood, and aromatic spices, tart cherry and forest floor. Great acid and grippy structure. — 3 years ago

Les liked this