×
Download our app and take culture in your pocket
Get cultureOwl on the iOS App Store for free Get cultureOwl on the Google Play Store for free
VISUAL ARTS | PERFORMING ARTS | MUSIC | CULINARY | EDUCATION | FAMILY | ARTIST SPOTLIGHT
3 Sommeliers Give us the Dish on Wine Pairings!

3 Sommeliers Give us the Dish on Wine Pairings!

When we started the Foodie Diaries several years ago, our goal was to give readers a taste of the fabulous eateries South Florida has to offer to better plan their culinary outings.

For this special Culinary issue, we’ve decided to take a look back at the past year’s foodie highlights at the dishes that particularly tickled our palates. To make things even more exciting, we’ve invited three very special guests, renowned Sommeliers Shari Gherman, Charlie Arturaola, and Chad Lipson, and asked them to provide their expert opinions on pairing these delectable delights with the perfect wines of their choice.

So get comfy and pour yourself a glass of your favorite wine while we serve up some delicious food for thought to help you create your next perfect culinary adventure!

Lobster Stracciatella Risotto

1826 Restaurant and Lounge - Miami Beach

Fine dining's perfect rendition of comfort food, this platter's warm, creamy, flavorful & slightly al dente. Served with leeks, parsley and tomato confit.

As a Sommelier, which wines would you prefer with these dishes and why?

Shari Gherman
"Wishing I could taste the dish! It sounds wonderful, and I would not think twice about what I would pair it with. I’d like
 to see this dish paired with a Chardonnay, but not an oaky one. Chardonnay is generally perfect for “creamy” dishes, but when you add in the tomato confit, I want a little more acid. So I would go with a Chardonnay that has more minerality. Grgich Hills from Napa Valley would be perfect. The wine is bright, rich, silky, with nice minerality. (About $40)"

Charlie Arturaola
"Zuani, Collio Bianco, Friuli, Patrizia Felluga. It’s a dry white wine with lime, citrus nuances, and an oily mid palate. This delicious "Cru" white wine (one of my favs!), is medium bodied, with big structures and
 fine acidity. The citrus and mineral flavors go great with the complexity of the Rissotto ingredients, and the mouthwatering lobster! *About $32"

Chad Lipson
"M Chapoutier Condrieu Rhone. Well balanced Viognier Floral fruit on the nose with a touch of smokiness on the finish. *About $50"

Madai Snapper Ceviche

Vintro Kitchen - Miami Beach

We definitely snapped to attention with this lemony delish dish! The sweet drop peppers literally burst with flavor and the complementing blast of garden fresh mint, earn this treat the coveted two foodie snaps up!

As a Sommelier, which wines would you prefer with these dishes and why?

Shari Gherman
"When I think Ceviche, I think Sauvignon Blanc. Gallegos Sauvignon Blanc (Napa) is a beautiful choice with its tropical fruit and citrus flavors, and great acid. Bursting with flavor, it would stand up
 well and complement this ceviche beautifully. *About $22"

Charlie Arturaola
"Sauvignon Blanc, Boulder Bank "Fitzroy Vineyard" Marlborough, New Zealand. There is no doubt that a ceviche requires a zesty wine, and Sauvignon Blanc from New Zealand accomplishes this with its delicate acidity, and lemony, kiwi notes. This wine is a perfect match for these sweet drop peppers. *About $18"

Chad Lipson
"Laurenz V Singing Gruner Veltliner. Citrus flavor with spice and acidity to add to the dish. *About $16"

LA BOMBA

TORO TORO - Intercontinental Hotel Miami

Save room for dessert, because La Bomba is The Bomb! The server places a plastic lining that sticks to the table, then brings out a giant chocolate sphere piled high with fresh berries, dulce de leche ice cream, strawberry ice cream and almond cookie crumbs. The sphere is cracked over the table lining and breaks into pieces. Then these pieces are drizzled with dulce de leche, a caramel vanilla sauce, and a berry sauce.

As a Sommelier, which wines would you prefer with these dishes and why?

Shari Gherman
"This sounds like it doesn’t need a paring. It’s pretty heavy! But if I were
 still in the mood for imbibing and had the room, it would have to be a late harvest Riesling. The Best of Show of the American Fine Wine Competition (AFWC) was Glenora, and it is decadent, like this dessert. Glenora Ice Wine Riesling, Finger Lanes, NY. *About $30"

Charlie Arturaola
"Did you say Chocolate and Dulce de Leche? Oh my! My choice would be Graham 20 Tawny Port, Douro, Portugal. When you we need a dessert wine with character, Tawny Port is the one! This aged Tawny port is a great match for the Dulce de Leche and is bold enough
 to work into chocolate flavors. Graham’s Tawny has that spicy-sweet, seductive mid palate taste, with caramel, walnuts and dried fruit
 flavors. It’s perfectly balanced and rich with lingering flavor *About $65"

Chad Lipson
"Veuve Cliquot Demi-Sec. Great depth of flavors, delicate bubbles and ripe fruit. *About $50"

Roasted Bone Marrow

The Local Craft Food & Drinks - Coral Gables

Prepared with an Asian chimichurri, the unctuous molten marrow inside with slices of crisp grilled Rye bread-were a perfect combination of the almost primal pleasure of eating pure rich hot bone marrow.

As a Sommelier, which wines would you prefer with these dishes and why?

Shari Gherman
"I think this would do well with a 
red that’s not too heavy, but has a lot of
 flavor, especially as it’s being served with 
an Asian flair. Kestrel Vineyards Cabernet
 Franc is my choice. It’s deep red in color, with the aroma of black cherries and blackberries. The palate is filled with sweet, dark
 fruit, spice, earth anise, nutmeg, roses and dried herbs. *About $40"

Charlie Arturaola
"My choice is Beaujolais, Morgon, Chateau Des Jacques Louis Jadot. The Asian chimichurri requires a red dry wine with mineral and raspberry fruit character, to bring out the best of this delicious dish with many gourmet followers! *About $22"

Chad Lipson
"Pride Cabernet Franc Sonoma. Current and Anise aromas with well rounded tannins. *About $65"

Sashimi Tiradito

SUSHI SAMBA - Coral Gables

Wow... such a simple concept taken to new levels! The ultra-fresh raw yellowtail bathes in a luscious jalapeno and lemongrass sauce that is tangy, spicy, and outrageous! We are thinking it should be made into a beverage or even a lollipop...

As a Sommelier, which wines would you prefer with these dishes and why?

Shari Gherman
"With this type of sashimi, featuring delicate flavors and jalapeno, we can go two ways: a delicate, chilled Sake or a lighter styled semi-dry Riesling. For the Sake, I would make sure it was clear, like a junmai. For the wine, I’d choose Golden Bunches Dry Riesling, GRV, Signature Series, with aromas and flavors of peach and citrus. It’s off dry, with long finish.. *About $15"

Charlie Arturaola
"A tiradito is a classico in any good Sushi place! A great pairing would be Pinot Grigio, Swanson Vineyards, Napa California. The soft melon and guava flavors, as well as the refreshing Dry White taste, blend perfectly with the luscious Jalapeño and lemongrass. *About $24"

Chad Lipson
"Trimbach Gewurztraminer, Alsace.
Dry, very light-bodied wine, with a spicy finish. *About $20"

Roasted Branzino

Dolce Italian - The Gale South Beach

Mediterranean sea bass served whole with fingerling potatoes, spinach and cherry tomato sauce. Crispy and very flavorful skin with flakey, tender meat. This fish is perfectly prepared and a must have on your next visit.

As a Sommelier, which wines would you prefer with these dishes and why?

Shari Gherman
"Sauvignon Blanc by Ladera on Howell Mountain. It’s a very clean, crisp wine with flavors that are well integrated and that complement each other, including notes of citrus, and green apple. The freshness would complement the lightness of the fish and the rustic quality of the entire dish. *About $25"

Charlie Arturaola
"Villa Solais, Vermentino di Sarde, gna, Bianco di Santadi, Sardegna. This dry, zesty round white with medium body, fine acidity, and long complex finish has enough weight to carry this flaky Mediterranean dish! *About $22"

Chad Lipson
"Oliver Leflaive Puligny Montrachet, Burgundy. Slight citrus with a great oak finish. *About $70"

American Wagyu Skirt

BLT Steak - The Betsy South Beach

Perfectly seared and crisp on the outside with delectable juicy tenderness. Flavorful sauce options for dipping but just dip something else into them because the flavor of the skirt on it's own was perfection.

As a Sommelier, which wines would you prefer with these dishes and why?

Shari Gherman
"Going to have to head to Syrah with this. While I am not a meat-eater, I know many who are, and certainly I read a lot about pairings, especially as I must make recommendations so often. Wagyu beef
 is unique, marbled, tender, full of flavor. It needs a meaty wine. VIE Winery Syrah, from the Las Madres Vineyard, would be ideal. *About $39"

Charlie Arturaola
"Preludio Red Barrel Selected 2011, Canelones, Uruguay. A Tannat blend, it is one of
 the finest wines to pair with top cuts of meat, such as Wagyu, grilled skirt steak.
 It’s a dry red, noticeably tannic, but with soft textures, finesse, currant spicy flavors, elegance and perfection! *About $34"

Chad Lipson
"Robert Foley Merlot Napa. A very bold Merlot with blackberry and long smooth finish. *About $60"

Grilled Octopus

Lobster Bar Sea Grille - Fort Lauderdale

Fresh & straight forward with TONS of flavor! Nice char on the outside, perfect texture and great acid! Simply delicious!

As a Sommelier, which wines would you prefer with these dishes and why?

Shari Gherman
"Let’s go crazy here! We need to stay white because of the acidity, lightness and tenderness of the octopus. I would want a full-flavored white, with great acid and a certain depth to pair with this dish. I am a fan of unique whites, but staying here in America, I would choose a Gruner Veltliner from Ferrante (Ohio!). *About $15"

Charlie Arturaola
"Bodegas Luis Cañas, Crianza 2012, Rioja DOC, Spain. It’s a dry Tempranillo with
 a bit of Garnacha from Alavesa. The wine’s straight forward and full of life, with vibrant acidity, and earthy, ripe cherries that complement the toasty, char flavor of grilled Octopus. *About $22"

Chad Lipson
"Cloudy Bay Sauvignon Blanc, Marlborough, New Zealand. Grapefruit, depth and a very long finish. *About $30"

Dolce e Piccante

Joey's Italian Cafe - Miami

A unique twist on pizza. The overall flavor was sweet and spicy with a touch of Gorgonzola salty finish. Topped with figs, Gorgonzola cheese, honey and hot peppers on the thin & crunchy crust. Like a pillow of flavor, the crust coated in a honey glaze with a little kick at the finish - almost like a candied pizza! Note: whole wheat is available!

As a Sommelier, which wines would you prefer with these dishes and why?

Shari Gherman
"Normally I would suggest Sangiovese with Pizza. But my, there is a lot going on here! We need a ‘busy’ wine that can go with all these exciting toppings. That can best be found with a spicy zinfandel like St. Sophia Old Vine from Lodi. *About $30"

Charlie Arturaola
"Ahh, La Pizza! I’d recommend Barbera D'Asti Superiore, Le Orme Michele Chiarlo, Piedmont, Italy. A Barbera grape, dry wine with medium body and remarkable acidity from the Asti hills in Piemonte. Notes of blueberries and mineral tones, and good tannic structures tone down that candied figgy pizza flavor *About $14"

Chad Lipson
"Castello Banfi, Brunello di Montalcino. Tart cherry with hints of vanilla and licorice. *About $70"

Beef Cheek Burger

Tongue & Cheek - Miami Beach

Cheddar pimento cheese with warm, cream cheesy-like texture, caramelized onions, and a sweet house-made brioche to bring in another dimension. The burger was a major standout: tender, perfectly cooked, deliciously spiced flavor infiltrated in every bite. The whole experience was creamy, hearty, and delicate all at the same time.

As a Sommelier, which wines would you prefer with these dishes and why?

Shari Gherman
"A bright and flavorful Merlot sounds like the perfect pairing for this sweet and spicy burger. The Winery SF produces a lovely one from the North Coast. Winemaker Bryan Kane recently won winemaker of the year from the American Fine Wine Competition. *About $25"

Charlie Arturaola
"Bodegas Norton Privada, 2013 Malbec Blend, Agrelo, Argentina. A dry red wine, huge & muscular. It’s fine balanced with plum, lush flavors that are elegant and grand. This classic Argentine wine has enough oomph to make you crave another burger! *About $25"

Chad Lipson
"Turley Old Vines Zinfandel, California. Wild berry flavors with a peppery finish. *About $40"

Heritage Pork Belly

Max's Harvest - Delray Beach

Suveed and then glazed in maple-bourbon, showcased with Farmer Jay's mustard greens, crispy fried shallots, and local peaches. Each bite melted in our mouths with a sweet and savory deliciousness.

As a Sommelier, which wines would you prefer with these dishes and why?

Shari Gherman
"There are a lot of flavors going on in this dish. We’ll need to get creative here. I’d go with a blend, some nice fruit, acid, a little oak, all mixed together to make a full bodied, exciting wine.
 Try Troublemaker from Hope Family, a fun blend of Syrah, Grenache, Mourvedre, and Zinfandel. *About $20"

Charlie Arturaola
"Maple bourbon glaze and mustard are big flavors! This dish needs a wine
 with personality! My choice is 12 Volts, 4 Kilos, Red, Vino de 
la Tierra de Mallorca, BIO, Balearic Island, Spain. This great dry Tinto from a Biodynamic red blend has it all, firm Tannins and fleshy dark fruit flavors! *About $33"

Chad Lipson
"Bougrier Vouvray, Loire France. Slightly sweet sparkling Chenin Blanc with great fruit and honey tones. *About $20"

What's your favorite wine and what do you like to eat with it?

Shari Gherman
My tastes in wine changes with the weather—and my mood! Big reds are my favorite, so I enjoy robust Zinfandel, deep Syrah and complex Cabernet. On the other hand, it gets so brutally hot here in South Florida, 
I love refreshing whites like Sauvignon Blanc, dry Riesling and Gruner Veltliner. With the reds I like seared tuna and with the whites, sushi

Charlie Arturaola
LOVE to drink red wine Post Scriptum de Chryseia, a dry from the Douro region in Portugal. It has an intense ruby color, dry mid palate and opulent tannin textures and would go great with roasted and crispy pork. After all, we love the mix of cultures here in South Florida!

Chad Lipson
If you asked me this question last week the answer could have been different. I drank a bottle of 2480 Cabernet Savignon the other night with dark chocolate. Cabernet and chocolate is always one of my favorite pairings.

Bio

Shari Gherman
Shari Gherman is president and co-founder of the American Fine Wine Competition & Charity Wine Gala. She is a Sommelier and has been involved in all aspects of the wine industry for over 25 years. Her experiences in sales, marketing, distribution, supply and advertising, have combined to form a unique background. Through the American Fine Wine Competition, Shari has established a vehicle to raise money for worthy causes, including a variety of upscale wine events which meld her love for wine with her drive to give value back to the community. Reach Shari at Shari@AFWCandGala.com or visit the AFWC website at AmericanFineWineCompetition.org

Charlie Arturaola
Charlie Arturaola has dedicated his life’s work to serving, informing, educating, and entertaining people around the world about wine, and becoming an internationally renowned sommelier. Arturaola has communicated about wine in all ways imaginable, from sommelier and corporate wine director, to teacher, mentor, appraiser, contestant judge, actor, and president of his own wine consulting and appraising firm, Grappolo Blu, Inc., based in Miami Beach, Florida. At the moment, he is working on his second film with movie director Nicolas Carreras, The Duel of Wine in Europe. Arturaola was named a Chevalier by the Ordre des Coteaux de Champagnes, Wine Communicator of the Year at the IWSC, UK by VINITALY, and Confraria dos Vinhos do Porto. Fore more info; visit his website charlieswines.com

Chad Lipson
Chad Lipson is no stranger to the iconic, luxury steakhouse brand, having been with Morton’s The Steakhouse for more than a decade, when he began working as a server with Morton’s in North Miami Beach. During his tenure, he was promoted to General Manager and traveled to other Morton’s locations across the country before returning to Morton’s in North Miami Beach. He is a certified sommelier of wine, which allows him to marry his love of vintage spirits and flavorful fare.

Close

Lost your password? Please enter your email address. You will receive a link to create a new password.

Error message here!

Back to log-in

Close