Fast food and wine? Why not...

There have been a number of articles, blogs and tweets posted lately about pairing wine with your favorite fast food. Let’s face it, as bad as it is for you, there are times when fast food tastes just so darn good! Even the most revered chefs have been known to satisfy their taste buds through the drive-thru. Most notably, Thomas Keller, of Napa Valley’s French Laundry, is a big fan of In-N-Out burger. 

I don’t think anyone questions the negative nutritional value of fast food. But when you do indulge, why not enjoy it with a glass of wine? The debate should not be about what types of foods you are allowed to enjoy with wine. The focus should be on what type of wine tastes best with what you eat.    

In the article, McWine Pairing Tips by Joshua Wesson, he writes, “The notion of pairing fast food with wine has never received much respect anywhere.This is a shame, because whether you're eating pizza in Naples or fried chicken in Nashville, wine can be served with fast food every bit as easily and deliciously as any other kind of cuisine. Perhaps even more easily.”

Gregory Dal Piaz, Editor-in-Chief of, recently published an article, McDonald’s Wine Pairings. The article is a fun read, but even more entertaining are the comments to the notion of pairing wine with McDs. There are a number of reasons to not eat a Big Mac (and other fast food treats), but it seems some readers have missed the point of his story. Piaz calls this out in his own comment post:  “I think intoleranc­e and disdain has been one of the defining elements of the wine culture and I want to help change that.” 

While we have not tried wine with McDonalds, we have uncorked a bottle with other fast foods, including Keller’s favorite, In-N-Out…and it was awesome! (Two Favorites). We’ve also been known to enjoy a nice Sangiovese with our favorite pizza, Round Table’s King Arthur Supreme ~ with no bell peppers. (A Great Sangiovese for pizza and game night and Cosentino Sangiovese). 

There’s nothing that says wine must only be enjoyed with a fancy meal, juicy steak or fine cheese. With so many wines available at all level of price points, there is literally something out there for anyone, and any meal.Next time you are in line to collect your dinner from the window or at home waiting for the delivery guy to ring your doorbell, consider these fast food pairings recommended in “What To Drink with What You Eat”:

KFC Fried Chicken:  Gewurztraminer, Pinot Noir, sherry (dry Spanish)

Domino’s Pizza:  Barbera, Malbec (Argentinian), Merlot, Sangiovese (especially with pepperoni)

Taco Bell Gorditas:  rose, Sauvignon Blanc (esp. New Zealand), sparkling wine

White Castle Hamburger: Reisling (off-dry), rose

McDonald’s Big Mac: Cabernet Sauvignon, Cabernet/Shiraz blend, Chenin Blanc

Regardless of your meal choice, fancy or fast, be adventurous and enjoy it with wine! 


Posted on August 20, 2011 and filed under Adventures.