How to Pair Char Siew with Wine

Char siew is a quintessential Singaporean dish. This lightly spiced, roast pork with succulent fat is soaked in a sweet sauce made from honeyed soy sauce, ginger, wine, hoisin sauce and sugar. Served on plain rice or noodles with cucumber slices, this savoury goodness is one of the most popular food dishes in Singapore.


Photo by mott32hk


Wine Pairing Tips


Sweet and savoury flavours make wine taste more drying and bitter, more acidic, less sweet and less fruity which makes Char Siew a little tricky to pair with wine. Below we’ve listed a few tips to guide you in choosing the best wine for your next Char Siew meal.


Tip # 1:

Go for jammy fruit wines. The acidity and ripe fruit flavours will stand up to the soy sauce and marry nicely with the flavours of the hoisin sauce. The following McHenry Hohnen wines come to mind.


2015 Rolling Stone

The nose is a tribute to the unique terroir of the Margaret River region with scents of a village drying room with violet-infused air, freshly harvested black currants and blueberry confectionery. Savoury notes of black olive tapenade, tobacco leaf and dusty dark chocolate adds finesse to the palate.


2016 Hazel’s Hill Zinfandel

Bright and silky, with a smooth texture, this medium bodied red reveals an aroma of spiced cranberry confection, sour cherry, dried prunes and hints of chocolate dust tannins.


2018 Hazel’s Vineyard Grenache Syrah Mataro

Taste of ripe mulberry and cherry confection with notes of fragrant violets, myrtle pepper and sweetened chai spices. The palate is soft, ripe and voluptuous with an elegant presence of dry herbs and savoury jamon.



Tip # 2 :

Don’t shy away from tannins. Big reds with tannins match well with the smoky caramelization of the meat. Tannins and acidity will help cut through the fats in meaty dishes. Think Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot and even Shiraz.


2014 Tyrian Clouds Cabernet Sauvignon

Bold and fun, this classic red is a wine that is full of life. Well balanced with a cascade of berry flavours and cocoa undertones.


2015 Myattsfield Shiraz Mourvedre Viognier

The blend of Viognier, Shiraz & Mourvèdre in this 2015 Myattsfield wine is about creating a “layering” of flavours on the palate. A focus on spicy, dusty, earthy characters of Mourvèdre, married with spicy red berry fruits of Shiraz and lifted citrus aromatics of Viognier.


2018 Tyrian Clouds Merlot

Fresh blackcurrant, pepper and herbaceous notes are woven into the smooth texture of the wine. Supple tannins flow across the palate, inviting you to take another taste.



References:

Instant Pot Char Siu: Easy Recipe and Wine Pairing

Chinese Food and Wine Pairing – Perfect Matching