During the Hong-Kong International Wine & Spirits Fair, Augustin Lacaille, the Château Guiraud Brand Ambassador, and Jeannie Cho Lee, first Asian Master of Wine, presented how four Château Guiraud vintages from the 1stGreat Classified Growth in the 1855 Classification can easily pair with the diverse and complex cuisines of China.
When we refer to Chinese cuisine, it is useful to break them up into eight iconic Chinese cuisines: Lu (Shandong); Hui (Anhui); Su (Jiangsu); Zhe (Zhejiang); Chuan (Sichuan); Min (Fujian); Xiang (Hunan); Yue (Hong-Kong & Guangdong).
In Chinese food pairing, it is important to respect the cuisine, the culture and to introduce the right wine which will preserve the integrity of the dishes. Pairing wine with Chinese cuisine can be challenging but also rewarding, each bite a different and unique mixture of flavours.
Read below for Jeannie Cho Lee’s wine notes and food pairing recommendations.
Château Guiraud 2004
A gorgeous aromatic wine, this wine exudes youthful vibrancy. There is still a layer of ‘puppy fat’ with no signs of bottle age. The wine is round and soft, yet fresh and vibrant and the acidity can be felt in the finish, contributing to its long length. This wine will pair well with Hunan cuisine where many dishes have a rich, creamy texture and spicy flavours. Try it with spicy chicken or fish with sesame topping. Mildly spicy Sichuan dishes can also work here — try it with twice cooked pork. The wine will provide a nice contrast to these flavourful dishes.”
Château Guiraud 2002
After nearly a decade in bottle, this wine has shed its roundness and in its place is a floral bouquet with delicate, gentle flavours and a fresh, lively finish. There are notes of Thai jasmine and hints of jack fruit on the palate and the finish is linear and fairly long. The sweetness is just starting to recede so it will not intrude upon delicate flavours. This is a versatile vintage since it isn’t heavy nor rich. Enjoy it with Fujian dishes such as ‘Buddha jumps over the wall’ or stuffed fish meat balls. It will also pair well with Zhejiang dishes such as vinegared fish or beggar’s chicken./p>
Château Guiraud 1998
Dried chrysanthemum aromatics arise from this 13 year old wine. The wine is delicate and beautifully perfumed with a silky texture. There is sufficient freshness and depth here to pair well with cuisines that utilise seafood and emphasise freshness such as Shandong and Jiangsu cuisine. From Shandong, try braised abalone or sweet and sour carp where the wine will complement and echo similar flavours in the dish. From Jiangsu, try the lotus roots stuffed with glutinous rice where both the texture and the flavours in the dish will complement the flavours found in the wine.
Château Guiraud 1996
This is a beautifully mature Sauternes that has all the ethereal characteristics that make it perfect for many different dishes. On the palate, there are notes of egg tart and sesame seed paste but there is freshness too in the finish. Because the wine is beautifully woven together without any overt sweetness at this stage in its life, the wine will pair well with a wide variety of Chinese cuisines. Due to its delicacy, it will pair well with numerous Cantonese dishes, as diverse as dim sum or roasted goose or pork. From Anhui, the imperial goose dish or mountain vegetable dishes will also work well with this wine.”