Spaghetti alle VongoleSpaghetti alle Vongole

How to pick the right wine for your meal

With this clever trick, finding the perfect pairing is a breeze. And just like that, you’re having red wine with clams.

Today, we are going to give you what may be the simplest tip you’ve ever heard about pairing wine and food: it’s all about the sauce. Trite as it may sound, this throws most of what is usually taught on the subject out of the window. You can confidently set aside the common notion that fish and seafood should be served with white and red meat with red.

This traditional dogma dictates that white meat and fish should be paired with white wine, while red meat calls for red, but can poached fillet of sole in orange beurre-blanc really be lumped in with grilled gilthead with herbs and olivade, and can a veal medallion in cream sauce really be compared to a Brasato al Barolo? Of course not. However, if you let the sauce (or, in the broadest sense, the cooking method) guide your choice of wine, selecting the right wine is suddenly a piece of cake.

At Bianchi, our fish restaurant on Zurich’s Limmatquai, for example, we happily suggest pairing your spaghetti alle vongole with a silky red. Why, you might ask? Because the delicate clams are served in a tangy garlic and tomato sauce, and these strong flavours call for an equally robust companion. A textbook-perfect pairing!

«Accompany your spaghetti alle vongole with a white wine one time and with red the next: do you notice how each one brings out different flavours in the dish?»

Signature Daniel WigetSignature Daniel Wiget
Daniel Wiget, Regional Manager/Key Account Manager Central SwitzerlandDaniel Wiget, Regional Manager/Key Account Manager Central Switzerland

Daniel Wiget
Regional Manager/Key Account Manager Central Switzerland


«This is how Maremma tastes! This full-bodied, aromatic barrel-aged red from the beautiful Tuscan coast pairs perfectly with seductive spaghetti alle vongole. A true poem!»


«Are you familiar with the Montepulciano variety? It bears no relation to the village of the same name in Tuscany. In fact, it’s an ancient grape variety from Abruzzo. And spaghetti alle vongole is the perfect dish to savour it with!»


«The structure of the Chardonnay makes this delicate, lively cuvée a great match for the aromatic seafood dish. The addition of 20 percent Pinot Bianco contributes a wonderful citrusy freshness.»