Enjoying a glass of chilled wine and fresh shellfish on the patio of your favorite local restaurant embodies the relaxed spirit of summertime. The best type of wine to serve with oysters is an open topic for debate among food enthusiasts, and the options can seem overwhelming. The chefs at Gulf Shores, AL’s popular oyster bar, Papa Rocco’s, chime in with their favorite wines to pair with oysters.
Top Wines to Pair With Oysters
- Pinot Grigio: Dry white wines like Pinot Grigio are an excellent choice. Because it has a bright, crisp flavor, this wine acts like a slice of lemon to balance the oysters’ rich flavor.
- Champagne: Everything tastes great with Champagne, and oysters go especially well with a glass of this bubbly beverage. The light, effervescent flavor of Champagne provides an excellent counter to the silky texture of the raw oysters. Follow deep-fried or baked oysters with a sip of Champagne for extra refreshment between bites.
- Sauvignon Blanc: The bright, limey flavor of Sauvignon Blanc is a great complement to the briny taste of oysters. This wine also works well with the other strong flavors that accompany oysters, such as garlic, Cajun seasoning and Tabasco sauce. Diners looking for something different can try substituting Sauvignon Blanc with another similar type of wine, Muscadet, for a new flavor.
These wines are all excellent suggestions, but they’re only the tip of the iceberg. If you prefer another type of wine, such as Chardonnay or Zinfandel, feel free to enjoy it.
What Not to Drink
One thing food and wine experts agree on is that diners should avoid wines with harsh tannins when ordering oysters. Heavy red wines like Cabernet don’t pair well with shellfish and often make oysters taste excessively salty and metallic. Exercise caution if you drink hard spirits as they can inhibit digestion and upset your stomach. To get the most enjoyment, stick to white wine the next time you visit a restaurant.
Ready for happy hour? Visit Papa Rocco’s restaurant to order your next plate of oysters from their extensive menu. Whether you like them raw, cooked, or just served with a side of butter and lemon, Papa Rocco’s is the place to go for shellfish in coastal Alabama. Call them today at (251) 948-7262. View their full menu online, and check their Facebook page for the latest live music schedule.