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Wine Pairings for Italian Main Dishes

As principal and co-founder of the DineAmic Group, Lucas “Luke” Stoioff has played a key role in creating the new Siena Tavern, an Italian fusion experience. Lucas Stoioff, a food and wine aficionado both personally and professionally, enjoys pairing good wine with Italian dishes.

Although many people automatically associate Italian food with a glass of red wine, the complexities of the nation’s many cuisines prompts a closer exploration of the pairing. For example, the seafood dishes of northern Italy tend to call for a light and dry Soave white or a fruity and floral Lugana. Cream sauces tend to also pair nicely with a white wine; many connoisseurs prefer an Alfredo dish with a sweet Pinot Grigio or Riesling.

The classic tomato-based cuisines of Italy’s central regions still go best with an acidic red wine. The Chianti, which comes from the Sangiovese grape, naturally coordinates with tomato sauces while contrasting with the olive oils and cheeses that enhance the cuisine. A Chianti wine also pairs well with a Tuscan meat dish, as do many of the other unique wines from the Sangiovese region. Like the Zinfandel, the Sangiovese wines bring out the flavors of a spicier and richer dish.