5 Great Wines for Seafood Lovers

Posted on: 7 January 2016

If you're putting together a wine basket for the seafood lover in your life, you're probably wanting to include some selections beyond the traditional chardonnay and sauvignon blanc that everyone automatically reaches for when seafood is on the menu. Fortunately, other types of wine exist that pair well with seafood -- following are five of the best and what types of seafood they complement.

Pinot Noir

Pinot noir grown and bottled in Oregon and Washington pairs perfectly with wild salmon caught in North Pacific waters. Pinot noir is a light red, slightly dry wine with fruity and earthy notes that is robust enough for the slightly stronger taste of salmon without being overpowering.

Pinot Gris

Pinot gris is a white wine made from a mutation of the pinot noir grape. It has many of the same characteristics of pinot noir, such as a fruity bouquet and spicy notes, but it has a lighter flavor profile. It pairs well with shrimp, halibut, and bottom fish such as red snapper and ling cod.


A classic, light red picnic wine, Beaujolais is a perfect stand-in for serving with salmon in place of pinot noir when a slight change of pace is desired. Because it's a little sweeter than most pinot noirs, it's a pairing choice for salmon that's been prepared using honey or fruit sauces. 

Sparkling Rosato

Sparkling rosato is a light, lush wine with delicately fruity notes that pairs perfectly with ahi tuna, black cod, or red snapper. It's also an excellent choice for elegant dishes such as trout almondine.  However, because it's a sparkling wine, it adds a festive element to any meal, and can make an ordinary dinner of pan fried catfish into a special occasion.


Muscato is an excellent choice for serving with crab and lobster. This grape grows best in the alluvial soils of coastal plains, giving the finished product a slightly salty tang mixed with sweet, fruity notes. It's best served cold with freshly caught crab and lobster cooked over a beach bonfire, but it's also very much at home on the tables of the country's most elegant restaurants as an accompaniment to lobster served with drawn butter. It's also a good choice for casual crab cake dinners on the patio at home.

The seafood lover in your life will be thrilled to receive a wine gift basket crafted with his or her personal preferences in mind. You may also want to look into gift baskets from local wineries, such as Sand Castle Winery, for more ideas.