How to Pair Red Wine with Oysters… Yes, You Can!
Is it really possible to bypass the tabu of serving red wine with oysters? According to I Love Ostrica, an exclusive online shop dedicated to oysters, caviar and fresh seafood, and the winery La Collina dei Ciliegi, located in Veneto, itʼs nothing more than a myth whose time has come. Together this innovative online platform and the Italian winery headed by Massimo Gianolli decided to work together to find just the right match for oysters and red wine, proving that it is possible to bring these two favorites together after all.
Working from a good knowledge of both products and how they pair, the two companies settled upon a somewhat challenging choice and selected the worldrenowned flat oyster from the mouth of the Belòn River in France. Known as the Belòn Oyster, itʼs legendary for being the first oyster to arrive in France, brought thousands of years ago as part of the trade route used by the Romans.
To compliment this special seafood, I Love Ostrica and La Collina dei Ciliegi opted for a single variety Corvina IGT, a grape variety closely associated with the area of the Valpolicella where it grows with a thick skin making it the perfect grape to dry for Amarone and Ripasso. Yet, bottles of the single variety wine exist as well, in this case not dried before vinification, most are usually served with antipasti, stews or fattier fish. Corvina tends to be a bright red, tart wine with a lighter structure, higher acidity and low tannins. It is fresh and easy to drink like a summer white wine, and just as with a white, the Corvina, which is most often served at a temperature between 12-15 Celsius or 55-60 degrees Fahrenheit, was for this pairing chilled before serving.
Belòn oysters, which have a creamy plump meatiness, are finished in the brackish waters of the Belòn known for having wood from nearby trees resting at the inletʼs bottom, a factor which gives these oysters in particular an ability to balance out any tannins in the wine. Their persistent, intense mineral flavor with a hint of nuttiness can hold its own against the Corvina.
The result was a match that was interesting and completely new, with the delicate bouquet of the wine elevated by the salty notes of the oysters, the two complimenting each other and building flavors that worked together creating a unique tasting experience.