Cinco De Mayo Wine Pairings

A recent example of wine pairings that went well together is my company’s Cinco de Mayo party this past Wednesday. I’ve reviewed both of these wines before, so I won’t repeat myself in those regards, but I will link to those reviews in case you missed them.

2009 ranga.ranga Sauvignon Blanc, Marlborough, New Zealand

2009 ranga.ranga Sauvignon Blanc bottleWe celebrated the victory in battle of the Mexicans over the French at the Battle of Puebla in 1862 by hucking an inflated rubber ball at a metal hoop. Appropriate, I know. We played next to a freshly cut lawn, the sweet, pungent scent of clipped grass still very prominent on a soft spring breeze. The temperature, just over 80 degrees Fahrenheit, with a light humidity, was enough to work up a quick sweat without being sweltering or oppressive. I mentioned in my review of the ranga.ranga that it “just smells and tastes like a summer party after a hard day of gardening and yardwork.” In this case, we got the experience without actually putting in the effort, which was doubly enjoyable.

The herbal, citrus-y, and grassy flavors in the Sauvignon Blanc matched perfectly. I’d take time away from the game to have a quick sip, and the brisk acidity and tart flavors were both cooling and refreshing. Though the complexity of the wine was lost, as I didn’t exactly have the focus or time to enjoy the finish, the flavors still functioned very well as a thirst-quencher.

It was almost too easy to just gulp it down instead of having a mere sip, and I might have had to refill my glass once or twice more than I otherwise should have. The high alcohol content also made me a lot more confident in my abilities, which hadn’t been adequately exercised since last April, and I found myself jacking up three-pointers that would even make “Zach Randolph, Point Guard” blush.

2008 Yellow + Blue Torrontes, Cafayate Valley, Salta, Argentina

The other wine that we had for our Cinco De Mayo party was a pairing for the food, which was an old-fashioned shrimp boil. We had yellow and blue torrontes cartontwo pots going on, one with a garlic-seasoned brew and the other with a classic creole-style boil. The scents mingled together immaculately in the air around the picnic area, “forming up like Voltron,” to borrow a phrase from Rick Bakas.

On the review for this wine, I raved about the seafood pairing, creole flounder stuffed with shrimp, crab, and peppers. Obviously, this experience had a lot to do with why I brought this wine for the shrimp boil. The floral notes of the wine accented the spicy scents of the shrimp boil very well. Aside from the food, the Torrontes was still crisp and very cool, well suited to an outdoor spring party. The floral scents worked for the season as well.

While I spent a lot more time with the ranga.ranga than with the Yellow + Blue Torrontes that day, probably because I spent 2/3 of my time at the party playing basketball, I found both to be perfect for the conditions. If you plan on having an outdoor party before it gets too warm, especially one that will involve any kind of athletic activity, you can’t go wrong with a dry Marlborough-style Sauvignon Blanc. If you’re doing any kind of spicy cookout with a seafood or poultry theme, a South-American-style Torrontes will hit the spot.

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8 Responses to “Cinco De Mayo Wine Pairings”

  1. Brian Says:

    I need to move down south so I can join in your parties. They sound awesome. Alas, my wife doesn’t like the seafood so I’m left, mouth watering, living vicariously through your shrimp boil… sigh…


    • wineaccguy Says:

      We here in the south, while not in the durrty south, still know how to have a good time. I would say a Sauvignon Blanc is a fantastic alternative to a margarita on a warm North Carolina evening.

      Having a boss who grew up in Louisiana doesn’t hurt the culinary experience either ;-)

  2. BrandonHoulihan Says:

    This is my favorite Wine Accessorized post to date because I can really connect with it. In my opinion there is nothing better than hanging out in the summer, enjoying some drinks, cooking, and shooting hoops! I love your bit of humor with the Zach Randolph three pointer. Awesome post!

    • wineaccguy Says:

      Hey, I appreciate it man, and I totally agree. I live for summer days like this.

      And I’ve had the Randolph video on my mind for a couple years now. I’m so glad I finally got the chance to share it with those who can appreciate it!

  3. @nectarwine Says:

    You celebrated Mexican independance with Seafood, Basketball, New Zealand, and South American stuff! Wow, no burritos, margaritas or pinata’s huh?

    Cool, nonetheless!


    • wineaccguy Says:

      Haha hey, Argentina speaks the same language as Mexico. That’s a link right there.

      And we had margaritas and Corona as well, I just didn’t partake (much).

      We also discussed getting a pinata and filling it with airplane bottles or mini wine bottles. That would have been a fun time.

  4. Gillett Johnson Says:

    Saw that Ed commented on your ranga review. As the chief brand building officer (CBBO) and parter i would like to add that this wine should improve your layup as well.

    Let us know if we can help you find the 3 Brooms or Arona. The 3 Brooms may be a hard find.

    • wineaccguy Says:

      Well I haven’t noticed any improvements in my layups as of yet. Is there a money back guarantee on that, or are there more delayed effects?

      And I actually haven’t seen 3 Brooms or Arona yet, though I haven’t actively searched for NZ wine at my other two shops of choice yet. I’ll keep an eye out for em next time I go.

      Thanks for coming by!

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