The best way to properly appreciate a wine is with food. But this is also where one should be more careful, particularly regarding the choice of wine for a specific dish, in order to achieve the correct balance between the aromas and tastes of both. Each type of wine has very specific characteristics, which increases the difficulty to choose.
Then, each person has their taste; there are those who only like white wines; those who only drink red wines and so the degree and difficulty to choose increases. There is only one way to overcome these situations: to try several times and always with different combinations, so as to find out the ones we like the most.
In the case of the two types of Madeira wine – still (table wines) and fortified (Madeira wines), the range of solutions is quite broad, which offers the ability to answer to several culinary requests. The still Madeira wines present a great acidity, they are fresh and normally have a low alcohol content. They go quite well with the traditional fish and seafood dishes, such as the white and rosé wines.
The traditional meat dishes, particularly the beef skewer on a laurel stick, also combine well with Madeiran wines, mainly the red ones.
But these wines go beyond all this as combinations with several cuisines, such as sushi, Indian, Italian and Mediterranean food, may be explored. Therefore, the Madeiran wines are starting to be successful on mainland Portugal and even abroad, in which the consumers now discover these different wines.
On the other hand, the fortified wines, with some centuries of history around the world, are increasingly used in several combinations, due to their great versatility and quality. Even though they are sweet wines, their high acidity grants the necessary freshness to be used as an appetizer, but also with some cheese, smoked sausages or even foie gras entrées, oftentimes a surprise to many consumers. The natural connections to diverse desserts are what make the Madeiran wines a safe option.
Among the dry, semi-dry, semi-sweet and sweet, there is always a Madeira wine that goes well with a dessert. After a good meal, Madeira wine is the perfect pair with a good cigar.
As Sir Winston Churchill, a great appreciator of Madeira wines and cigars, used to say: “My tastes are simple: I am easily satisfied with the best”.