Gewürztraminer (pronounced guh-VURZ-tra-meen-er) is one of the most aromatic wines you’ll encounter. This is appropriately fitting, considering the prefix, gewürz, means spice in German. Gewürztraminer comes from a pink grape, the savagnin rosé, and does well in cooler areas. While the wine does have a German name, and the grape comes from Germany, it actually originated in Italy in a small town at the foot of the Dolomite Mountains. It is here in the province of Trentino-Alto Adige and in the France region of Alsace that you’ll find some of the best gewürztraminer being made. As for the aromas and flavors that you’ll find, there often is roses, orange marmalade, lychees, grapefruit, apricot and ginger/gingerbread. While there can be both dry and sweet gewürztraminer, it is usually more of a dry wine. It is the sweeter aromas and fruity flavors that give it the sense of being a sweet wine, a little like riesling. Though gewürztraminer is famous in France and Italy, it is also grown in Germany (though I feel that goes without saying…), Hungary, California, and Washington state.
Food it pairs well with: Duck; Pork; Chicken; Crab; Shrimp; Thai flavors; Indian Flavors
Recommended Recipe: Quick Shrimp Pad Thai from Food & Wine
- 8 ounces pad thai noodles, preferably A Taste of Thai or Thai Kitchen brands
- 2 tablespoons Asian fish sauce
- 3 tablespoons light brown sugar
- 1/4 cup fresh lime juice, plus wedges for serving
- 2 Thai bird chiles or 1 serrano with seeds, stemmed and thinly sliced
- 1/4 cup plus 1 tablespoon canola oil
- 3 large shallots, thinly sliced (1 cup)
- 3 large garlic cloves, minced
- 12 ounces shelled and deveined medium shrimp
- 2 large eggs, beaten
- 4 scallions, thinly sliced
- Roasted peanuts, chopped cilantro and bean sprouts, for serving
How to make:
- Put the noodles in a large bowl and cover with very hot water. Let soak until just pliable, about 5 minutes. Transfer the noodles to a colander and drain, shaking and tossing the noodles once or twice.
- Meanwhile, in a small bowl, whisk the fish sauce, brown sugar, lime juice, and chiles.
- In a large nonstick skillet, heat 3 tablespoons of the oil until shimmering. Add the shallots and garlic and cook over high heat, stirring occasionally, until lightly browned, about 3 minutes. Add the pad thai noodles and stir-fry until heated through, about 2 minutes. Add the shrimp and cook, stirring occasionally, until they begin to curl and turn pink, about 2 minutes. Scrape the noodles and shrimp to one side of the pan and add the remaining 2 tablespoons of oil to the empty side of the skillet. Add the eggs and cook, stirring occasionally, until nearly set, about 1 minute. Add the scallions and toss everything together, keeping the eggs relatively intact. Add the fish sauce mixture and stir-fry until the noodles are evenly coated, 2 to 3 minutes. Transfer the pad thai to a platter. Top with peanuts, cilantro and bean sprouts and serve with lime wedges.
Recommended CO Wines: Infinite Monkey Theorem Gewürztraminer; Stone Cottage Cellars Gewürztraminer; Talon Winery Gewürztraminer; Carlson Vineyards Gewürztraminer (Dry, Sweet, or in between)