How to Pair Wine with Brunch

Planning a fabulous brunch but want to move beyond the basic mimosa? Use these tips and recipes to pair wine with your favorite brunch dish!

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Are you brunching this weekend? Whether you're going out to your favorite brunch spot or making it at home in your PJs make sure to pair wine with your brunch! If the idea of putting ingredients together absolutely terrifies you, you can – luckily – order delivery. Either way, we’ve got some easy tips to pair wine with brunch beyond the basic mimosa (although there's nothing wrong with a mimosa-fueled brunch).

Keeping Things Simple

Brunch means different things to different people, but it can often mean an array of dishes or small plates. If you’re thinking, “Ack! I’m making three totally different things. How will I know which wine goes with all of them?!” – Fear not. There are a couple of good options that work with lots of dishes in the breakfast-brunch realm. A fruity rosé or a crisp, aromatic white wine like Viognier will work pretty well across the board. Pinot Noir is a solid choice is also a solid choice.

Pair wine with brunch – a close-up of a stack of pancakes topped with strawberries and blueberries

Sweet Treats

Today’s the day for a treat if ever there was one. French toast, pancakes, and croissants are all delightful options. When it comes to baked goods, think about the main flavors – either from the toppings, the filling, or the sauce – to help you pick a wine.

When it comes to something simple (but delicious), like traditional French toast, go with a dry Riesling to balance the sweetness.

If fruit is front and center, pick a fruity wine. Crepes with raspberry sauce go nicely with a fruity, sparkling rosé. A rosé also goes nicely with this citrus almond brioche, or you could opt for an unoaked chardonnay. Blueberry pancakes pair well with slightly sweet and fizzy Moscato d’Asti.

Chocolatey treats – like chocolate chip pancakes or chocolate croissants – pair well with a sweeter wine like Banyuls.

Fresh-from-the-oven goodies like cinnamon rolls or baked oatmeal with berries go well with a semi-dry Riesling or a Pinot Noir.

Pair wine with brunch – top-down view of an abundant lox plate with bagels, tomatoes, cucumbers, cream cheese and more

Savory Sensations

When it comes to savory brunch options, we’re usually talking about eggs. Some say that eggs can be tricky to pair with wine, since the yolk can coat the palate. The key is to offset the creaminess of the eggs with a lighter, zippier wine. A light rosé or a cool, crisp white wine will often be your best bet.

For instance, scrambled eggs, poached eggs, or eggs benedict pair well with a light, fruity rosé or dry Prosecco. If smoked salmon is in the mix, a dry rosé will help cleanse the palate between bites.

A veggie quiche or spring vegetable frittata pairs well with a light white wine like Pinot Gris or Assyrtiko. This cheesy egg and polenta casserole goes nicely with a dry, unoaked Chardonnay.

For avocado toast with poached eggs, go with a light white wine like Sauvignon blanc. You could also try Grillo, a light Sicilian wine with tropical fruit flavors.

When there are spicy elements or bold components – like meat or tomatoes – that overpower the eggs in your dish, focus on those big flavors to help you pick a wine. Huevos Rancheros, for instance, with spicy salsa and chorizo pairs well with a light, earthy red like Gamay or Tempranillo. Heavier dishes like ham and cheddar bread pudding can hold up to a light, low-tannin red like Pinot Noir or Beaujolais.

Brunch Really Means Lunch

If you’re doing mom a solid and letting her sleep in, you might want to gear your menu toward the lunch end of brunch. If you want to pair wine with brunch items that are closer to lunch, you've got lots of options. Whether you like to spend the afternoon grazing on small plates or sitting down together for a meal, we've got you covered.

Pair wine with brunch – top-down view of a small breakfast cheese platter with fruit, nuts, and two glasses of white wine

Small Bites and a Light White Wine

For tapas-style brunch, no one will object to a cheese board. When putting together a cheese board to pair with wine, pick cheeses that have something in common. Fresh cheeses like goat cheese and mozzarella go well with lighter white wines like Sauvignon blanc or Chenin Blanc. Aged, low-acid cheeses pair well with light red wines like Pinot Noir.

Adorable little cucumber and dill sandwiches pair well with a light white like Chardonnay or Sauv blanc. This strawberry basil bruschetta goes well with an aromatic white wine like Viognier.

For crab cakes, a light, herbaceous Sauvignon blanc or a Languedoc-Roussillon blend would be a good choice. If Sauvignon blanc sounds good to you, you can add a spring salad to the menu.

Pinot Noir, Caviar

Some lovely options for lovers of red wine include this carrot ricotta tart or a butternut squash tart, which both go beautifully with light, earthy Pinot Noir. Pinot is also a nice match for richly flavored bacon cheddar scones.

You could also go big and stay home with a glazed ham and sweeter red wine like Brachetto d’Acqui.

In Vino Finito

With these tips, anybody can pair wine with brunch for a fabulous, boozy mid-day feast.
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