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What Wine Goes With Greek Food?

Mon, Jun 05, 23

The glorious Mediterranean region, with its blue waters and sun-kissed landscapes, is not just famous for its picturesque views but also its culinary delights. Greece, a vital part of this region, offers a rich and diverse food culture. It's all about earthy and robust flavors paired with fresh ingredients. But when it comes to savoring Greek cuisine, finding the perfect wine to complement it can sometimes be challenging. This article is your guide to navigating the world of Mediterranean food wine pairing, ensuring you always have the best wine with Greek food.

Factors to Consider When Pairing Wine with Greek Dishes

Greek food is a sumptuous medley of vibrant flavors, from tangy tzatziki to savory moussaka. Thus, pairing wine with such an eclectic mix requires careful consideration.

The Dominant Flavor

Identify the dominant flavor of the dish. For instance, a lemony Greek salad would require a wine that complements its acidity, like a dry white wine. A full-bodied red would be a fantastic choice if the main ingredient is rich meat like lamb.

The Cooking Method

How a dish is cooked affects its flavors. Grilled fish paired with a light and fruity white wine can be a delightful combination, while slow-cooked lamb kleftiko may call for a robust, tannic red.

Regional Pairing

One often-overlooked factor is the regional pairing. Greek cuisine can be paired beautifully with Greek wines. These wines are crafted to complement local dishes, creating a harmonious blend of flavors.

Quick Tips for Pairing Wine with Greek Food

Navigating the Greek food wine pairing world might seem intimidating, but it doesn't have to be. Here are a few tips to help you get started:

  1. Go for Greek Wines: Greek wines, such as Assyrtiko or Xinomavro, offer a great starting point. They are designed to pair well with the local cuisine.
  2. Pair by Weight: Lighter foods go well with lighter wines, while heavier foods need fuller-bodied wines. A simple rule is to match the weight of the food with the weight of the wine.
  3. Acid with Acid: If you're having a tangy Greek salad, choose a wine with high acidity to balance it out.

Common Wine Mistakes to Avoid When Pairing with Greek Cuisine

To master the art of pairing wine for Greek food, it's also essential to know what not to do:

Overpowering the Food

One common mistake is choosing a wine that overpowers the dish. While the wine should complement the flavors, it shouldn't dominate them.

Ignoring the Spices

Greek food is known for its blend of spices. Ignoring them when choosing a wine can lead to a less-than-ideal match.

Choosing a Sweet Wine for a Savory Dish

While sweet wines have their place, they often clash with savory dishes. Ensure the sweetness of the wine does not overpower the spicy notes of the dish.

Elevate Your Greek Dining Adventure with Ideal Wine Combinations

Now that you understand the principles of pairing let's look at some ideal combinations:

Moussaka and Agiorgitiko

With its rich layers of eggplant, meat, and béchamel sauce, Moussaka pairs wonderfully with Agiorgitiko. This Greek red wine has the depth to complement the hearty flavors of this dish.

Grilled Octopus and Assyrtiko

For seafood lovers, try the classic Greek dish of grilled octopus. It goes well with Assyrtiko, a dry, crisp, white wine from the island of Santorini.

Spanakopita and Moschofilero

Moschofilero, a fruity, aromatic white wine with a refreshing acidity, beautifully complements Spanakopita's creamy spinach and feta filling.

Greek Salad and Roditis

The classic Greek Salad, full of fresh vegetables, feta cheese, and tangy vinaigrette, pairs well with Roditis. This rosé wine's crisp acidity harmonizes with the salad's zest.

Wine to pair with Greek food doesn't have to be a mystery. With the right knowledge, you can enhance your dining experience, making every Greek meal a culinary voyage. So the next time you wonder what wine pairs with Greek food, remember these guidelines and get ready for a delightful gastronomic journey.

Best Red Wine For Greek Cuisine

When it comes to the best red wine for Greek cuisine, Agiorgitiko (also known as St. George) is an excellent choice. This indigenous Greek grape produces wines with a deep ruby color and complex flavor profile that match the heartiness and intensity of many Greek dishes. It pairs perfectly with moussaka, a rich dish with eggplant, meat, and béchamel sauce. 

Xinomavro is another outstanding Greek red wine known for its robustness, complexity, and high acidity. Its full-bodied nature makes it a great companion for red meat dishes like lamb kleftiko or pastitsio. For dishes with tomato-based sauces, consider a medium-bodied red like Nemea, whose ripe cherry notes and subtle spice elegantly complement the tanginess of tomatoes. Choosing the right red wine can enhance your Greek dining experience, amplifying the flavor of each dish and creating a harmonious gastronomic affair.

Best White Wine For Greek Cuisine

Choosing the best white wine for Greek cuisine often leads to the delightful world of Greek white wines. A prime choice is Assyrtiko, a crisp, dry wine from the island of Santorini. Its mineral notes and bright acidity pair well with seafood dishes, such as grilled octopus or calamari. 

Moschofilero, another Greek white wine, offers a floral, aromatic profile that works wonderfully with dishes like Spanakopita, a spinach and feta cheese pastry. For lovers of salads, Roditis, a versatile rosé wine, complements the freshness and tangy flavor of a classic Greek salad. Another notable mention is Malagousia, a wine with lush tropical fruit notes and balanced acidity, great for poultry dishes or creamy sauces. With their varied profiles, these Greek white wines can harmoniously blend with the diverse flavors of Greek cuisine, creating a superb gastronomic experience.


Pairing Greek cuisine with wine can elevate your dining experience, seamlessly blending robust Mediterranean flavors with subtle grape notes. When selecting a wine for Greek food, consider the dish's dominant flavor and cooking method, and try to follow regional pairing principles. Greek wines, such as Assyrtiko, Xinomavro, Agiorgitiko, Moschofilero, and Roditis, are excellent for their indigenous compatibility with the local cuisine. 

Remember, lighter wines go well with more delicate foods, and fuller-bodied wines with heavier dishes. Ensure the wine's intensity doesn't overshadow the dish and align the wine's flavor profile with the dish's spices. Some perfect pairings include Moussaka with Agiorgitiko, grilled octopus with Assyrtiko, Spanakopita with Moschofilero, and Greek salad with Roditis. Avoid common mistakes like overpowering the dish with the wine, neglecting the dish's spices, and matching a sweet wine with a savory dish. With these guidelines, you're ready to embark on a flavorful Greek gastronomic journey backed by the perfect wine pairing.

By Winning Marketing Strategies