October is National Pizza Month, so naturally I'll be having a slice pie or five. And what goes better with pizza than wine? Nothing—except, maybe, the right *kind* of wine. We talked to Ashley Ceraolo, SVP of Marketing and Beverage at California Pizza Kitchen, to get the recs.
"Here's an interesting case where opposite flavors attract for one out-of-this-world pizza and wine pairing flavor experience. Pairing a sweeter white wine like riesling with salty ham or bacon balances the flavor, with sweet complementing salty. Together, the salty/sweet combo creates a very smooth and delicious pairing."
Try: Wolffer Estate Grapes of Roth Riesling
"Sauvignon blanc is a light and crisp wine with zesty flavors of ripe tropical fruits. For pizzas featuring fresh, crisp veggies, I recommend a wine with more tartness or 'green' flavors, such as a New Zealand sauvignon blanc, which typically features bell pepper notes."
Try: Nobilo Sauvignon Blanc
"Light seafood dishes take on more flavor when paired with equally delicate white wines. With light, citrusy notes and a crisp finish, pinot grigio enhances the light, briny flavors of a scampi-topped pizza."
Try: Tommasi Le Rosse Pinot Grigio
"Cream-based sauces elevate the natural 'creamy' notes in a rich, buttery chardonnay."
Try: Clos Du Bois Chardonnay
"Nothing pairs better than earthy mushrooms and a medium bodied pinot noir full of earthy, spice notes."
Try: Buena Vista Pinot Noir
"A smooth and rich pinot pairs perfectly with cheeseburgers alone or on a pizza. The flavor of the ground meat paired with a flavorful pinot noir is similar to the flavors of enjoying a steak dinner."
Try: La Crema Pinot Noir
"Typically made with cabernet, merlot, or cabernet franc, red blends are very approachable wines, and a favorite of millennials interested in the multitude of flavors the blends offer. A great red blend leaves a lasting impression of flavor and texture on the palate and goes well with salty, red meats on a meat lover's pizza."
Try: SAVED red blend
"A medium body-style cabernet sauvignon with no oak makes this a really friendly and approachable wine that's great with flavors of fresh tomatoes and herbs."
Try: Santa Julia Cabernet Sauvignon
"The BBQ sauce that serves as the base of the pizza has a sweeter, smoky kick that pairs well with a fruit-forward wine, like most types of pinot noir."
Try: Mark West Pinot Noir
"A soft and smooth red is the perfect accent to grilled meats and Mexican flavors and pairs well with the unique 'sauce' on this pizza—tangy cilantro pesto and a side of bright, homemade salsa verde."
Try: Coppola Merlot
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Samantha Leal is the Deputy Editor at Well+Good, where she spends most of her day thinking of new ideas across platforms, bringing on new writers, overseeing the day-to-day of the website, and working with the awesome team to produce the best stories and packages. Before W+G, she was the Senior Web Editor for Marie Claire and the Deputy Editor for Latina.com, with bylines all over the internet. Graduating from the Medill School of Journalism at Northwestern University with a minor in African history, she’s written everything from travel guides to political op-eds to wine explainers (currently enrolled in the WSET program) to celebrity profiles. Find her online pretty much everywhere @samanthajoleal.
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