This is a guide that shares the best kind of wines to pair with these different ways that ham is prepared. Ham goes well with wine, just in case you didn’t know. When you hear the word ham, you will probably relate it with your homemade sandwich, baked ham for Thanksgiving, stuffing, or that scrumptious cured ham from Europe. If you thought of all those kinds of ham, you’re in luck.
Cured ham is a big part of the holiday season whether it be Easter, Thanksgiving or Christmas, we’re sure to have ham on our dinner tables.
Ham looks different in every country. Ham could be the leg part of the hog, bone-in bone-out, long cured, short cured, sweet, savory, and the list goes on.
One thing we do know is that ham tastes great and it tastes even better with wine.
Here’s a list of wines to serve with the festive ham.
1. Dry Riesling
Riesling is no doubt an elegant wine. It has crisp and refreshing white wine perfect with bright flavored ham. Hams that have been glazed with citrus fruit such as oranges, grapefruit, lemon and even pineapple would work well with Riesling.
Riesling has notes of ripe green tree fruit sustained with apple blossom and lime.
For those of you who love a good red, Zinfandel is the best type of red wine to go with ham. This no-fuss red is affordable with bold flavors of dark fruits with some spice to bloom your palate.
Zinfandel would pair well with hams off the grill or roast.
This is considered one of the best ham and wine pairings. Gewürztraminer is a citrusy wine that goes perfectly well with sweet-savory hams. It is a dry and bright white wine with just the right amount of acidity.
Gewürztraminer would work well with any kind of ham but it would enhance the dining experience if you had it with homey butter ham.
Grenache is one of the more important varieties of grape wine known in the wine world. It is medium-bodied with higher alcohol content but it has a deceptively light color that is almost translucent.
Grenache is a fruity wine with spice notes of cinnamon. Its flavor is reminiscent of that of berries and it has medium acidity and tannic level.
Grenache is best for hams that aren’t too sweet like country ham.
A lot of us like the fancy Parma ham or the even fancier Jamon Iberico. But what goes well with those?
Rosé is the answer. Rosé is a good wine to pair with dry-cured, aged ham. These thinly sliced hams have bold flavors with a chewy texture. The salt content for these kinds of ham matches well with a Rosé with bright flavors and a little bubble.
6. Central Otago Pinot Noir
Central Otago is a region in New Zealand known for the best kinds of Pinot Noir. Central Otago’s Pinot Noir has the classic notes of cherry, refined blackberry flavors, subtle leather notes and spice aromas.
This kind of Pinot Noir is perfect for hams with sweeter glazes or those that have star anise, anise seeds or five spice in its curing mix.
7. Aged Tempranillo
Tempranillo is one of the more popular wine varieties in Spain. It is known to ripen and be harvested earlier than most grapes in Spain.
It is a full-bodied red wine with a lush aroma and notes of cherries, plum, figs and strawberry. The wine is medium tannic and moderately acidic, perfect for savory and smoky ham.
Tempranillo is originally from Spain so it is perfect with Spanish hams like Jamon Serrano and Jamon Iberico. If you don’t have those kinds of hams at your deli, it’s also great with Mortadella, country-cured non-glazed ham, Black Forest ham and even Spam! Yes, you read that. SPAM.