Last week I blogged about creating a wine and cheese tray, and while they are fabulous and fun, they are generally more filling. I think of cheese trays more as a full appetizer. So what do you do when you want a wine to sip on, and want something to nibble on with it, but nothing too filling?! Enter: the fruit and nut tray! Not only is it gorgeous, it is tasty too! You’d be amazed at how well nuts and fruits can pair with wine!
When trying to appropriately pair wine and fruit, I would select my wine first. I literally read the labels and find one that sounds yummy! I choose the Joel Gott Sauvignon Blanc for this pairing.
(And, ok, to be fair, the back of his label doesn’t have a description. I’ve just had this one enough to know the main characteristics.) Joel Gott, on their website, specifically says that the 2014 Sauvignon Blanc has “aromas of pineapple, ripe stone fruit and citrus”. So, guess what I grabbed to go with my wine?! Pineapple and ripe stone fruit (apricots)! I got dried fruit because their flavors are typically more intense, but that is totally just a preference thing. I love the idea of pairing wine with the same notes it is supposed to be showing because it is foolproof! The fruits and wine really have to compliment each other, because they have similar characteristics.
The nuts are a little trickier because wines don’t usually mention specific ‘nut’ flavors or aromas. This is where I like to experiment! As I’ve said before, to the sommelier or expert wine drinker, wine and food pairing is an art and a science; to the average-Jane wine drinker, it is an adventure!
When buying nuts, this isle is my very good friend:
Ah, the bulk grain and nut isle, how I love you! Nuts are expensive, y’all! Unless you buy only what you need in the bulk isle! I decided to try pistachios, cashews and almonds with this wine. I spent $3 for all three! Total score!
So, getting to arranging your fruit and nut tray. There are 2 ways to do this (and I think both ways are aesthetically pleasing). First way is to have sections with each different nut and fruit.
See, so pretty! If you are OCD at all, this is the way for you!
Option 2 reminds me of the peanut bowl at the local dive bar. Just throw it all together! Either spread on a platter, or toss it in a bowl!
What do you think?! I like this way, but I think some of you reading this may be twitching at the thought!
For the actual tasting, you want to sip the wine first, then taste a fruit or nut, then sip the wine again. Think about what you are tasting. Did the wine change the flavor of the fruit? Did the fruit enhance the flavor of the wine? Which was your favorite food pairing? Which was your least favorite? As you continue making these mental notes, your pallet and mind will get sharper on your preferences. You will also find that you can pick out more aromas and flavors in wines without having a complimenting food to go with it.
Thanks so much for stopping by, I hope this was helpful! If you create a fruit and nut tray, I’d love to know your thoughts, so hit me up in the comments and let me know!