It’s no secret that Americans love Chinese food. In fact, 1/3 of Americans eat Chinese food at least once a month. If you’re part of that statistic, then you may have wondered what drinks pair well with your dish. Soda, perhaps, but what about wine? Did you know that there are actually some delicious wine and Chinese food pairings?
What kind of wine goes with Chinese food?
The tricky thing about pairing Chinese food and wine is that the flavors are so vast in different dishes. One dish can be spicy and peppery, while the next has a light and sweet flavor. So when deciding what kind of wine goes with Chinese food, there are endless options.
If you’re like most people, you mix and match Chinese food when ordering. Take a bite of this, a scoop of that, and you could easily have six different flavor combinations going on.
Instead of just taking a guess at what kind of wine goes with Chinese food, check out our guide! You’ll learn what wine goes with soy sauce, and if rosé really does go with Chinese food!
Chinese food isn't the only thing to pair with wine. You can also learn which steak to pair with wine here!
Red wine with Chinese food
Red wines always pair nice with a dark meat dish. The rich bold flavors of the red wine along with the saltiness of a juicy red meat melt together seamlessly on the tongue. Let’s look at some Chinese food dishes that go well with a glass of red wine.
Chinese Beef & Broccoli
Pairs with: Adaiba Retuerta
Produced from a selection of the best grapes from each of our vineyards, this wine combines the richness of a Tempranillo and the elegance of a Cabernet Sauvignon with the strength of a Syrah. Dark red colour with a clean, complex and fresh nose.
On the palate, it has an intense fruity touch, mainly of red fruits. Aged in French and American oak barrels, the wood infuses notes of cedar, pastry and dark roasting. It attacks the palate politely but firmly. In 2005, Abadía Retuerta Selección Especial 2001 received the award at the International Wine Challenge in London as the world’s best red wine.
As well, Abadía Retuerta Selección Especial was ranked for three consecutive days in Wine Spectator´s Top 100 World Wine Lis with 2010, 2011 and 2012 vintages.This is a very well-balanced wine, harmonious, with a rich bouquet and incredible expressiveness. Worthy fruit of the vine and of a job well done.
Why it works: This classic beef and broccoli is salty, juicy, and has the perfect crunch. This dish is flavored with ginger, onion, garlic, which pairs perfectly with an oaky red wine.
Kung Pao Beef
Pairs with: Apothic Red
Apothic Red wine is a masterful red blend featuring rich Zinfandel, smooth Merlot, flavorful Syrah, and bold Cabernet Sauvignon. These unique elements come together to create a red blend with layers of dark red fruit complemented by hints of vanilla and mocha.
Why it works: Kung Pao Beef has a ton of flavors going on in it. When you combine soy sauce, vinegar, garlic, ginger, and peanuts, you want a wine that has a nice strong flavor to balance everything out. Apothic Red has a nice deep flavor palate that will structure the dish and leave your tastebuds dancing.
Chinese Spare Ribs
Pairs with: Kendal Jackson Merlot
Kendall-Jackson Vintner's Reserve Merlot red wine consists of intricate layers of black cherry, plum, currant, and wild berry with a subtle hint of spice. The soft, and elegant tannins of this Bordeaux varietal carry these aromas and flavors to a long, silky and lingering finish.
Since 1982, Kendall-Jackson has remained relentlessly committed to producing only the finest quality wines from grapes grown in California’s cool, coastal vineyards. We carefully match climates and soil types for each grape varietal, and then guide each vineyard lot throughout the entire wine-making process. Our proprietary approach to wine-making has earned us our world-renowned reputation for wines that consistently exhibit our signature rich layers of flavor, combined with delicate balance.
Why it works: Red wine and pork is a surprisingly delicious combination. Kendal Jackson offers intricate layers of black cherry, plum, and a hint of spice that combines with the salty pork flavors into an explosion of taste.
White wine with Chinese food
Typically, white whine pairs well with lighter meat and seafood, as well as pasta and rice. Let’s take a look and see how we can pair white wine with Chinese food.
Shrimp Fried Rice
Pairs with: Frei Brothers Chardonnay
This Russian river valley chardonnay is a soft and complex reflection of one of sonoma's most renowned cool-climate regions. This wine displays flavors of green apple, orange zest and apple pie, complemented by notes of butter and toast. The rich, nutty flavors in this chardonnay lead to a silky finish and a plush mouthfeel.
Why it works: A cult classic, shrimp fried rice never lets us down. The sweet fruity flavors of the chardonnay blend effortlessly with the salty and seafood flavors of the fried rice.
General Tso’s Chicken
Pairs with: Weed Celars Sauvignon Blanc
A California Central Coast jewel. Honeydew melon, grapefruit, and citrus notes on the palate, followed by passion fruit and lime zest. This is a perfectly balanced expression of the Sauvignon Blanc varietal.
Pair it with white fish, fresh herbal dishes, vegetable dishes, light cheeses, pesto, briny dishes, pesto and oil-based sauces. Also goes well with vinaigrettes.
Why it works: A slightly spicy dish like General Tso’s chicken needs a nice cold glass of wine to cool it off. The flavors of the rich brown sauce pair perfectly with a crisp refreshing sweet flavor of Sauvignon Blanc. The refreshing flavors gently cleanse your palate so you’re ready to take another delicious bite.
Shrimp with garlic sauce
Pairs with: Barefoot Riesling
This light-bodied, sweet wine has flavors of juicy nectarine, sweet peach and ripe pear. Bright and vibrant acidity complements its refreshing finish. This refreshing light bodied Riesling wine pairs perfectly with mild cheeses, fresh fruits and spicy dishes. Ideal for sharing at outdoor parties on warm summer days, this refreshing sweet wine is best served chilled.
Why it works: Shrimp with garlic sauce is a light and delicate dish that calls for a light and delicate wine to sip with it. Barefoot Riesling White Wine features slightly sweet notes of juicy apples and tangy lemons along with the aroma of orange blossoms.
Interested in learning more about wine? Check out our other blogs:
A beginners guide to wine tasting
How long does boxed wine last?