When you sit down to enjoy a good cut of steak or a tasty red meat dish, it's not uncommon to pair the meal with a hearty red wine. However, if you're not into alcohol or just aren't feeling like imbibing, there are actually some delicious non-alcoholic alternatives that you can pair with your platter.
Two tasty pairings include cranberry and pomegranate juice. Both cranberry and pomegranate juice are great alcohol-free alternatives to red wine when paired with red meat. These juices work well with red meat because just like red wine, they contain tannins. Tannins are astringent compounds that give foods like coffee, wine, and tea their bitter flavor and rich color. These compounds help ensure that your drink isn't overly sweet, helping you avoid drowning out your meat's flavor.
Here are several other great non-alcoholic beverages to pair with your red meat, along with what to know about each of these pairings and why they work so well with steaks. Plus, for those of you who want non-alcoholic beverages to pair with your white meat meals, there are a couple of options for you, as well.
Alcohol-Free Meat Pairings And Why They Work
Cranberry and pomegranate juices aren't the only non-alcoholic drinks you can pair with red meat. You can also try drinking unsweetened tea with your steak. Just like those juices, tea contains tannins that help balance out the fat in your meat. If you find unsweetened iced tea too bitter for you, you can lightly sweeten it and still enjoy the pairing. Another good choice is to go for a simple club soda with citrus. Citrus juices, like lemon and lime, help cut through red meat's robust flavor. Plus, this combination is a refreshing palate cleanser in between bites thanks to the carbonation in the soda.
If none of these options suits your fancy, you can always just go for a non-alcoholic red wine. This NA option will give you all the perks of a red wine and meat pairing without any of the tipsiness that can sometimes come along with it. Similarly, you could opt for a classy mocktail that complements your meal's flavors. For example, a non-alcoholic sangria will pair with your meal beautifully.
What About White Meat And Seafood Pairings?
Red meat isn't the only kind of meat you can pair with non-alcoholic beverages. If you're serving up white meat, you're not restricted to only white wine pairings. You can spice things up by thinking outside the box.
For instance, a fatty, fried chicken can be a great dish to pair with sparkling white grape juice. This bubbly beverage is sweet and effervescent, helping cut through the grease and high fat in the chicken and balancing all that salt. For seafood, a great non-alcoholic pick is lemonade. Lemonade is acidic and somewhat tart, which prevents fish dishes from feeling too heavy. There's a reason why we love a squeeze of lemon over our fish dishes...it helps to downplay the fat content.
As you can see, the options are endless when seeking an alternative to wine pairings for your favorite meat dishes. So, whether it's red meat, white meat, or seafood you're eating, know that there are plenty of ways to pair your meal with a good drink without having to imbibe!
Read the original article on Daily Meal.