The Monte Cristo is one of those rare sandwiches that even has its very own national Monte Cristo Day to celebrate it. A Parisian product of the 1910s, this deli ham and cheese on white bread comes dipped in egg, deep-fried, sprinkled with powdered sugar, and served with jelly for dipping. While the clash of sweet and savory flavors seems like it would make a wine pairing more difficult, Doreen Winkler doesn't agree.
Winkler is a natural wine sommelier, orange wine expert, and founder of Orange Glou. Orange Glou is the world's first orange wine subscription service and wine store in New York City. Due to that experience, Winkler has some opinions to share with Mashed about why an acidic wine is the beverage to match this incongruous sandwich.
"A wine that has a bit more acidity like a red or rose Lambrusco, a sparkling wine from the Emilia Romagna in Italy, will cut through the battered and fried cheese, ham and turkey sandwich that's so rich," Winkler said. "It won't be overpowering and the bubbles will cleanse your mouth after every bite."
When it comes to wine pairings it's all about balance while also bringing out highlighted flavors. While we commonly know what wines are most delicious with different meats, cheese, and chocolate, we tend to pay less attention to sandwiches. Considering Americans eat more than 300 million sandwiches every day, maybe it's time to take a closer look at the best vinos to pair with them.
Highly Acidic Wines Pair Well With Salty And Fatty Foods
While it may seem like drinking a chilled rose or white wine is preferable to a room-temperature red wine for hot sandwiches, Doreen Winkler says the coolness — or lack thereof — of the wine isn't the issue. "The body of the wine and the flavors of the dish as well as acidity are the most important to consider when pairing. The main two factors to consider would be salt and fat content. You want to pair salty and fatty food with wines that have more acidity." Given this info, it makes sense that the Lammidia "Bianchetto," a high-acidity white wine, would have a suggested pairing on Orange Glou's website of a bacon, egg, and cheese sandwich.
For everyone wondering exactly what orange wine is, they're white wines that vineyards prepare so the juice and skin are still there after they press the juice. Most are dry and they range from a light yellow-orange to a dark orange color. Hence, orange wine. For those who love all the ingredients of a Monte Cristo but maybe not together, Winkler has sandwich suggestions for you, too. Winkler tells Mashed that grilled cheese and orange wine are the perfect combo. Grilled cheese will also taste amazing with an amber wine or dry, white wine.
Read the original article on Mashed.