Oyster Po-Boy with Remoulade: Only One Wine Will Do

Categories: Wine Time

oyster po boy.jpg
Photo by Jeremy Parzen.
At our house, we're already cranking up the a/c and bracing for the Texas summer.

But with the arrival of the heat also comes my favorite time of our yearly gastronomic cycle, when fried and grilled foods are guiltlessly consumed in mass quantities.

Summertime holidays -- from Memorial Day to the Fourth of July, Labor Day and all of the family birthdays that fall in between -- mean trips to Orange, Texas, to visit with my in-laws. And no stay in East Texas is complete without an oyster po-boy munched down on the banks of one of the many bayous that define the rhythms of life there.

On my palate, the thing that makes the Oyster Po-Boy such a noble dish is its unctuousness and its confluence of fatty flavors and textures, from the crispy batter and chewy Gulf oysters to the creaminess of the rémoulade.

In my wine pairing, I crave that same unctuousness, although I also want acidity, freshness and bright fruit to temper the gentle heat of the seasoning in this dish.

The answer to this enogastronomic conundrum?

Viognier, my friends, Viognier, that wonderful white variety from the Northern Rhône Valley that combines body and richness with fruit and acidity without the need of superfluous oakiness.

And in a rare exception to my general indifference to the often overly ripe wines of Santa Barbara and Santa Ynez, I'll reach for the Ampelos Viognier from the Santa Rita Hills. When it comes to pairing with my first oyster po-boys of summer, no other wine will do (unless someone wants to break out the Condrieu, but that's another story for another post).

Find the Ampelos Viognier at Spec's for about $25.

Location Info

Venue

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Spec's Warehouse

2410 Smith St., Houston, TX

Category: General

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14 comments
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Bells and Whistles
Bells and Whistles

 I think Viognier would be too aromatic, not crisp enough for a fried oyster po-boy. I would choose something with more acidity and sparkling-like a sparkling Vouvray or Cava.

Jeremy Parzen
Jeremy Parzen

I like your thinking, Bells and Whistles!

SirRon
SirRon

The guy says Viognier is a bad pair. You not only suggested it was a good pair, but stated that "only one wine will do." I've never done the two together, but I really love both oyster poboys and Viognier. Now I need a clarification.

Is it a great pair or not?

Or I will Occupy Wine Time.

SirRon
SirRon

Seriously. As a functional cross drinker, but not necessarily a wine nerd, this is very serious. You're an asset Mr. Parzen.

Jeremy Parzen
Jeremy Parzen

SirRon, I had no idea that this was so serious! For me, Viognier (and its unctuousness) are the ideal wine for this dish. Personally, I wouldn't reach for Chenin Blanc but I do appreciate Bells and Whistles' embrace of acidity (that was my point in replying to her). I base my pairings on three criteria: 1) local tradition; 2) parallels between the flavors and aromas of the dish and the wine; and 3) my visceral reaction to the pairing. In this case, I had recently tasted the Ampelos and when I was working on a pairing for the dish, it just "felt" spot on... I stand by my pairing and applaud Bells and Whistles for hers as well. Thanks for being here! 

SirRon
SirRon

Personal taste doesn't address "only one" vs. bad pair. It is not antagonistic to describe why your own selection works. Wine nerds would appreciate the conversation... something that doesn't happen enough here.

Jeremy Parzen
Jeremy Parzen

I love that Bells and Whistles says "wine nerds" and not "wine geeks". And once again, I admire and concur with her thinking... :)

@SirRon de gustibus...

 

SirRon
SirRon

I wasn't making the assumption. I use "guy" like "dude" or "man." If it makes you feel any better, I didn't assume you were a wine nerd either.

I still think Jeremy turtled up with his answer.

Bruce R
Bruce R

I realize this is a wine forum, but I'd pair Duvel with your fired oysters.

SirRon
SirRon

Love Viognier... I just wish I could find more of it in Houston.

Jeremy Parzen
Jeremy Parzen

I'm with you, Sir Ron... we should go occupy Spec's... 

ReginaD
ReginaD

No Chenin-Colombard?

Jeremy Parzen
Jeremy Parzen

Chenin Blanc could work great here... great pairing... :)

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