When you think of a burger, wine might not be your first idea of the perfect pairing—but, if you haven’t tried it yet, you could be missing out. Many wines go wonderfully with a juicy ground-chuck patty. From one of the largest wine shops in the Upper West Side, the experts at Martin Brothers Wine & Spirits share a few of their favorite flavor combinations that work exceptionally well for summer cookouts.
How to Pair a Wine With Your Burger
BBQ Bacon Cheeseburger
There’s nothing quite like a juicy BBQ bacon burger, especially with a few slices of American cheese on top. Since your burger will already be sweet from the BBQ sauce, pairing it with a savory wine is a good idea. Aglianico is a great option—this Italian wine will balance the sweet flavor of a BBQ burger with savory white pepper, smokey undertones, and dried figs.
If you relish a classic cheeseburger topped with lettuce, onions, tomatoes, and a thick slice of cheddar cheese, then you’ll appreciate a drier wine. Look for a bottle that’s high in tannic, like a South African Cabernet or Rioja. Tannins are compounds that occur naturally in grape skins; they make the wine taste more astringent and are more common in red wines than white.
Mushroom Swiss Burger
There’s no burger quite like the mushroom Swiss: topped with creamy Swiss cheese and caramelized onions, it offers rich, buttery flavors. To complement this meal, a mellow and fruity wine like a Merlot is your best bet. Choose one that’s a bit higher in acidity, such as a Washington Merlot, to create more flavor contrast.
If you’re looking for the perfect bottle of wine to serve at your summer cookout, stop by Martin Brothers Wine & Spirits on the corner of 107th Street and Broadway. Established in 1985, the wine shop has an extensive collection of spirits and regularly hosts wine tastings and events. Call (212) 222-8218 if you have any questions about their current inventory. You can also visit their website to shop for wines by region, and follow them on Twitter for more tips on pairings and suggestions.