Much has been made of the Mediterranean diet, a diverse menu fed by the sun-drenched coasts, arid plains, lush valleys and soaring mountains of Greece, Spain, Italy, France, the Middle East and North Africa.
It makes for a healthy table: according to the Mayo Clinic, the traditional Mediterranean diet reduces the risk of heart disease and cancer and lowers rates of Parkinson’s and Alzheimer’s diseases. Essential ingredients include fish, vegetables, fruit, balsamic vinegar, grains, couscous, olive oil, olives, pasta, polenta, legumes and rice. Just add wine.
Gary: A Mediterranean menu offers the opportunity to try wines from many of the countries in the heart of this region. While the Mediterranean climate is typically thought of as warm, many different meso-climates can be found. The ocean breezes and higher altitude areas where temperatures are more moderate often produce wines with more complexity rather than simply rich flavors.
While the following wine suggestions will be Mediterranean, any wine in the same style category from any global location can work just as well with the menu. With the many different grape varietals in the diverse countries of production, opportunities for new flavor experiences abound and offer the chance to find new favorite pairings that are off the beaten track.