A plus in pleasure: Asparagus & Wine
March 28, 2012 - Be it from the Austrian Marchfeld or from the Tyrol, asparagus is the Austrians' favourite seasonal vegetable and a class of its own. Wine connoisseurs and asparagus lovers have known it for a long time, and the inquisitive type found out first: The right wine accompanying asparagus makes the short-termed pleasure an exceptional springtime delight. In order to facilitate the search for a wine matching a tasty asparagus dish, the brochure “Asparagus & Wine” by the Austrian Wine Marketing Board (AWMB) contains numerous tested and proved combinations.
There is hardly a vegetable that is enjoyed in so manifold ways as asparagus. Opinions, however, diverge when it comes to the question of appropriate cooking. In order to save the asparagus lover daring experiments of combining wine and asparagus, the taste experts from Gault Millau in Austria and the AWMB have identified recommendable wine styles for traditional and extraordinary asparagus dishes. In the recently reissued brochure ‘Asparagus & Wine’ a big number of recipes and their wine companions have been clearly edited for consumers.Love at first sip
The rush for the 'king of vegetables' is on
Cutting asparagus is among the most demanding ways of harvesting. Still today the spears are carefully laid open by hand as deep as possible in the typical dams and cut with the help of a bent knife. Thus carefully harvested, asparagus finds its way into the Austrian kitchens only for a short period of time, namely from April to the end of June. Then it is appreciated for is complex and interesting flavour profile – nutty and sweet on top, slightly bitter at the bottom. Green asparagus is experiencing a renaissance at the moment, served either classically with Hollandaise sauce or – a bit more exquisite – as asparagus vinaigrette, asparagus with ham or fried asparagus, and it is brought to perfection by the matching wine.
Love at first sip
The perfect wine accompanying asparagus should be harmonious and not too light, then nothing can get in the way of the culinary delight. Especially medium-aged white wines of about two or three years, which are not too full-bodied and display a subtle, well-integrated acidity make good companions. The brochure's collection of wine styles contains delicate Muscat wines full of finesse, as well as Traminer and Rivaner wines. Nevertheless a white wine is not a must, also light Pinots and Portugieser wines are suited for an asparagus treat, just like the most universal food companion of the world: Grüner Veltliner. Among the top favourites there is definitely also the discreet and tender bouquet of Pinot Blanc. Due to its delicate fragrance it blends well with the noble vegetability of white asparagus.
It is not an easy choice, but it is made easier by the ”Asparagus & Wine” brochure, which dubs the asparagus treat into pure delight. It informs about all wine recommendations and surprises with variations of both classic and innovative asparagus recipes.