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Your Guide to Pairing Wine With Seafood

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Seafood is well-known for its many health benefits — in fact, the National Health Service (NHS) recommends eating two portions of seafood every week. You cannot go wrong pairing parmesan-crusted baked fish fillets or a creamy shellfish platter with a glass of wine, but you should not take a “one bottle fits all” approach. Before you order seafood online in the U.K., check out our guide to wine and seafood pairings for a nudge in the right direction.

Some Pairing Rules to Keep in Mind

  • White wines are often preferred with seafood, though lighter reds and sparkling wines can also complement many seafood recipes.
  • Choose your wine depending on the seafood’s texture and weight — the more tender the seafood, the more elegant the wine should be.
  • Consider the seafood dish’s most dominant element (typically the sauce) and pair with wine accordingly.
  • Balance the spiciness of the seafood with sweet wine and the saltiness with bubbles, just like you would with other meats.
  • Sweeter seafood dishes need a sweeter wine.

White Fish Wine Pairings

Delicate and mild-flavoured fish, such as plaice, sole and tilapia, require a lighter white pairing in order not to overpower the dish. Refreshing Italian whites such as Pinot Grigio, Vermentino, Fiano, and Grillo are natural matches. Zesty whites from other coastal wine regions are also a safe bet— think Spanish Albariño and Greek Assyrtiko. More medium-textured white fish like cod, halibut, haddock and sea bass tend to be thicker and go well with more flavour-intense whites like White Rioja (Rioja Blanco) or Chenin blanc. A dry, Alsatian Riesling also works perfectly.

Pink Fish Wine Pairings

You can pair pink fish (salmon and trout) with whites, reds, rosés, and sparklings. However, we recommend you go for medium-bodied whites like Chenin Blanc, Gewurztraminer, Pinot Gris, Romorantin and Riesling to bring out the rich and savoury flavours of pink fish. You can also go with light to medium-bodied reds such as Carignan Grenache, Pinot Noir, Shiraz, Nero d’Avola and Merlot.

Meaty Fish Wine Pairings

Meat fish like tuna, swordfish, monkfish and mackerel, are fattier and oilier than other fish. Being slightly oilier and higher in fat, they go well with more full-bodied wines such as Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Zinfandel, Malbec, Bordeaux Blend, Petit Verdot, Petite Sirah, Tannat and Sagrantino. Depending on the fish and how it is cooked, both rich whites and light-medium reds can be used. If the fish or the dish is salty, a sparkling wine such as Conegliano Valdobbiadene Prosecco, Cava or Champagne can provide a really good balance.


Shellfish like squid, oysters, crab, clams and shrimp tend to have rich flavours that are complemented nicely by acidic whites like Riesling, Chablis and Muscadet. Sticking to medium-full bodied whites like oaked Chardonnay, Viognier, and Muscat can help prevent the wine from being overpowered by any side dishes or sauces. 

Buy Fresh Seafood Online

If you are looking for fresh seafood delivery in Grimsby, Seafood Direct is the company to call. To browse our fine selection of mouth-watering fresh seafood, please stop by our collections page! And if you have any questions about our seafood delivery service, call us at 01472 566000 or write to us at One of our representatives will get back to you shortly!

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