Cocktail Mix

Two sommeliers pair wines with eight easy hors d'oeuvres

But cocktail food with straightforward flavors can be quite wine-friendly. I followed this rule while developing the ideas for the hors d'oeuvres here. I wanted the recipes to be quick to prepare, and they are: you don't even need to twist the soppressata sticks, and the trout for the brandade is the smoked variety rather than the salted kind, which must be soaked overnight.

If you're wondering what to drink with these hors d'oeuvres, check out the recommendations from sommeliers Madeline Triffon of Detroit's Unique Restaurant Corporation and Bobby Stuckey of the Restaurant at the Little Nell in Aspen. They don't always agree, which is reassuring—it is okay to have an Austrian white or an Italian red with my pepper crackers. But what do both experts think is a must? Champagne. "Most definitely food friendly," Stuckey says. Triffon concurs: "It goes with salt, fat and cheese—the major hors d'oeuvres food groups."

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