Courtesy of Kobrand.
Wine and Chinese food tends to promote a strange response among wine writers, which can be summed up as “pair Chinese food with off-dry Riesling. Or Gewürztraminer.” Well, fine, but isn’t that sort of like saying “pair French food with white Burgundy” or “pair Italian food with a red wine?” Last I heard, Chinese cuisine had enormous regional variety and a culinary tradition that extends back, oh, a few thousand years or so (in 2005, archeologists discovered the remains of some 4,000 year old noodles near the Yellow River; that's some mighty old noodles). Now, Americanized Chinese food, that’s a more recent invention—safe to say the folks who made those noodles four millennia ago weren’t chowing down on plates of General Tso’s Chicken, too. But regardless, here are some pairing suggestions for dishes from both the traditional and not-so realms.
Sweet & Sour Pork. Originally Cantonese, now sort of everywhere-universal, this dish of deep fried pork pieces in a glutinous sugar/soy/vinegar sauce can work well with something that’s full of good acidity and ever so faintly sweet—and that has bubbles, which scrub the tongue of all that sticky sauce. Caposaldo Prosecco ($14) would be a fun choice.
Steamed Whole Fish with Ginger and Scallion. Aromatic and delicious, and fairly delicately flavored (if you use a white-fleshed fish like tilapia or sea bass), this is a classic Cantonese dish. Go for an aromatic unoaked white with some body, for instance Pine Ridge’s 2010 Chenin Blanc-Viognier ($14).