6 Classic Lamb Wine Pairing Ideas
Pair wine with rack of lamb, and more, with these elegant ideas.
By: Kristin Anderson, Editor, TheWineBuyingGuide.com
Lamb is a great dinner choice for special evenings and holidays. With its delicate flavor and texture, it’s a great alternative to robust beef or pork. Braised lamb shank or roasted rack of lamb can be a showstopper dish for any holiday table. Or, perhaps you enjoy lamb on a regular basis. It is comforting and easy to cook in dishes like kibbeh, lamb kebobs, Haleem, or grilled lamb chops with rosemary.
No matter how you decide to enjoy lamb, you will want a delicious wine to pair with it. We have some great suggestions for wine pairings with lamb that will highlight its unique flavors.
Lamb is a delicate meat, and so it usually pairs well with a lighter red wine. Beaujolais, Pinot Noir, Côtes du Rhône, and young Rioja are all great choices.
However, different lamb dishes can call for different wines. Cuts of lamb with more fat can handle a red wine with more tannins. Lamb also readily absorbs the spices and sauces that it’s cooked in. So, spicy sauces call for a fruity wine like Zinfandel or even a refreshing Rosé wine.
Here are some great ideas for food and lamb wine pairings for every palate. Whether you prefer bold flavors or classic dishes, we have great ideas for your next lamb dinner.
Learn what type of wine to cook with, how much to spend on a cooking wine, and more in Cooking With Red Wine
Pair Lamb Shank with Pinot Noir
Pinot Noir is one of the best lamb wine pairings, and it is great with this classic dish. The light-bodied wine won’t overwhelm the lamb, and Pinot’s berry and woodland notes are the perfect flavor complement.
ROAR Garys' Vineyard Pinot Noir 2014
Pair Grilled Lamb Chops with Malbec
Smoky Malbec is a delicious wine pairing with lamb chops on the grill. The charred grill flavors are perfect with the fruity and spicy wine, and the soft tannins match with lean lamb.
Luigi Bosca Malbec 2013
Pair Greek-style Grilled Lamb with Agiorgitiko
When in doubt, match the origin of your food to the origin of your wine. This fruity and spicy Greek red is a great match for Greek-style grilled lamb. Crisp Greek white wine would also be delicious.
Skouras Saint George Nemea 2013
Pair Kibbeh with Dry Rosé
This spicy, fried Middle Eastern dish can use some freshness from Rosé wine. Pick something dry and fruity, like this South African Rosé for an incredibile lamb wine pairing.
Boschendal “The Rose Garden” Rose 2015
Pair Lamb Kebobs with Shiraz
Flavorful lamb kebobs are delicious with a bold, fruity red like this Australian Shiraz. The lush fruit flavors of the wine are perfect with the rich flavors of the kebabs.
Thorn-Clarke Ron Thorn Shiraz 2012
Pair Lamb Curry with Viognier
Curry can be a tricky match, but this crisp and flavorful Viognier is a great choice. This is a particularly great food wine, and its crisp flavors will balance the spice of lamb curry. This wine also pairs well with lamb tagine.
Yalumba Eden Valley Viognier 2014
Pair Rack of Lamb with Rhône Red Blend
Rack of lamb pairs well with many different red wines, but it is especially well matched with expressive, full-bodied red wines like the Rhône Red Blend. On its own, Syrah would also make a good pairing for rack of lamb.
Domaine de la Petite Cassagne Costieres de Nimes Rouge
Find the best wines to pair with your favorite salmon dishes in Wine Pairing With Salmon
What are your favorite lamb wine pairings? Leave a comment and let us know!