Pinot noir is a fantastic wine to enjoy while snacking. Its medium body, red berry flavor, and silky cherry notes all combine for a relaxing experience. That means there are several pinot noir appetizer pairing options that are ideal. When thinking of snacks to pair with pinot noir, think of what goes best with kicking back and enjoying a gentle sunset.
Oregon pinot noir is grown in the Umpqua and Willamette valleys, where the ancient volcanic soil offers a uniquely elegant wine. This makes for a wine that matches rich feasts of rare foods, sure. It also means a wine that’s down to earth and pairs with snacks and even cold leftovers perfectly.
Salmon, duck, chicken, pork, and mushroom risotto are all ideal for a full meal with pinot noir. If you have anything like that in appetizer form, it will fit well. That said, let’s think of more traditional snack fare: fruits, cheeses, and snack meats.
The Perfect Snack Plate
A snack plate with crackers, goat cheese, pear, and salami is the perfect way to enjoy pinot noir. Herb crackers are ideal because they aren’t too salty, and the herbs will set well against the rich bouquet of the pinot noir. The goat cheese is creamy and lets the other tastes linger on your tongue. Pear is refreshing and complements the brighter berry flavors. Finally, salami is salty and has a mouthwatering taste that enhances every other element. Each of these snacks enhances the others as well as the wine, so you have one of the most ideal and relaxing plates possible.
Other cheeses can also work, but will shift up the combined experience a bit. Fresh mozzarella matches these other flavors well, but you’ll lose the creaminess of the goat cheese. Brie retains that creaminess, but can feel a little too understated compared to goat cheese or mozzarella.
Figs and dried fruit also match pinot noir well. So do walnuts.
Practically anything with mushrooms goes with pinot noir, so garlic butter mushrooms or bacon stuffed mushrooms can be phenomenal. You can also have them alongside plates like the one above. (There’s nothing saying you can only have one pinot noir appetizer pairing at a time.)
Leftovers: Practical Snacks to Pair with Pinot Noir
Sometimes a snack isn’t an Instagram-perfect meat-and-cheese plate, or stuffed mushrooms you spent 45 minutes preparing. Sometimes the best and most relaxed snacks to pair with pinot noir are just the delicious leftovers you’ve been looking forward to all day.
You might think from herb crackers, mozzarella, salami, and mushrooms that cold pizza would taste excellent with pinot noir. You would be absolutely right. The most popular pizza toppings (like sausage and pepperoni, or mushrooms and olives for vegetarians) pair exquisitely with pinot noir. The melty mozzarella cheese and oils are a delicious match, hot or cold.