Now grown pretty much everywhere around the globe, Riesling is one of the most sought-after grape varieties. The ‘King of German Vineyards’ - as experts like to call it - produces many styles of wine from bone dry to lusciously sweet. Its distinctive perfume (litchi blossoms when young to petroleum when aged) with its versatile character makes it an ideal companion to food. 

Dry Riesling 

Tabbouleh, coleslaw and more

With its light to medium body and fresh acid bite, dry Riesling is one of the rare wines that you can easily pair with super fresh salads like tabbouleh, coleslaw and celeriac remoulade. 

In Germany, homeland of Riesling, the driest styles are named Trocken (literally ‘dry’ in German). In Alsace, France (at the border of Germany), Riesling is regarded as the noblest variety and offers some outstanding dry wines. 

Our top recommendation: 
Weingut Gindorf, Riesling Trocken, Mosel, Germany, 2018, £6.88 

If you’d like to try a Riesling from the New World, Australia is the place to look. Clare Valley or Eden Valley in the South, where vineyards benefit from high altitude, tend to produce the best dry Rieslings of the country. 

Our top recommendation:  
Rieslingfreak, No.6 Aged Release Riesling, Clare Valley, Australia, 2014, £18.79

Homemade fish cakes 

That’s not all. Riesling is great to accompany fish cakes and other dishes using salty white fish (cod, sea-trout) and mash potatoes. A dry and bold Riesling is the best pairing to match the richness of the dish and contrast with the saltiness of fried food. The high acidity of Riesling also acts as palate cleanser, so you can fully enjoy the next bite.

The region of Pfalz in Germany produces Rieslings which are noticeably fuller in body and richer in texture. In California, United States, only a few vineyards are capable of expressing Riesling with complexity and depth. 

Our top recommendations: 
Emil Bauer & Sohne, Sex, Drugs & Rock'n Roll Riesling, Pfalz, Germany, 2017, £19
Alexana, Revana Vineyard Estate, Riesling, California, United States, 2017,  £21.60

Off-Dry Riesling 

Thai, curry and spicy food

You can’t go wrong when pairing off-dry Riesling with mild spicy food such as curry or Thai food. With its medium level of sweetness and low alcohol content, the wine counterbalances the spiciness of the dish. The aromatic nature of both wine and food also complement another. All of this makes Riesling the ideal partner to spicy food. German Auslese is a classic choice. 

Our top recommendations: 
Weingut Gindorf, Riesling, Auslese, Germany, 2018,  £9.15 
Weingut Koster-Wolf, Flonheimer Rothenpfad, Rheinhessen, Riesling Halbtrocken Kabinett, Germany, 2018, £11.72

Sweet Riesling 

Desserts with caramel, apple or cream 

Riesling is also a dessert’s best friend. Because of its affinity to Botrytis, the variety is able to produce lusciously sweet wines. And if you’ve been following our weekly blog, you know that pairing dessert with sweet wine is a no-fail option.

Desserts with caramelized fruits and cream are great to keep in mind as Riesling’s own notes of fruits (peach, apple, pear) will accentuate the orchard fruits of your desserts. Try poached pears with caramel sauce, caramelized apple pies or salted caramel rice pudding. You’re welcome! 

Beerenauslese (BA) and Trockenbeerenauslese (TBA) are the sweetest types in Germany and make for a first-class pairing. If you’re after something a bit more quirky (and also more affordable), Riesling can now be found in England and results in really interesting wines. 

Our top recommendation: 
Beacon Down Vineyard, Riesling, England, 2018, £13.95

From starter to dessert, the versatile Riesling offers plenty of food and wine pairing inspirations. Start exploring today: browse our collection of over 400 Riesling wines from around the globe on

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