Best Wine Pairing with Chicken Marsala


Quick Answer: Wine Pairing with Chicken Marsala

Chicken marsala flawlessly suits white as well as red wine. It tastes its best when paired with wines like Pinot Noir, Chardonnay, Chenin Blanc, Frappato, Malbec, Gamay, Viognier, and Grenache. Pair any of these wines with your chicken marsala for a yummy and sumptuous dining endeavor.

This is an ultimate guide for people on a hunt to find the best combination of chicken marsala with wine to gratify their taste receptors.

I’ve crafted this article by putting in hours of research coupled with my personal experiences.

So, what are you waiting for? Let’s get started.

But first, let’s get to know chicken marsala a bit better to set a fundamental step before we settle for an ideal wine for it.

About Chicken Marsala

Chicken Marsala as the name suggests is prepared from Marsala, a type of wine fortified with brandy.

It is an Italian-American dish crafted from pan-fried golden chicken cutlets and mushrooms in a rich sauce made from Marsala wine.

Now that we have you drooling. Let’s find the perfect wine match for your chicken marsala meal.

Wine Pairing with Chicken Marsala

Here are my top picks –

1. Pinot Noir

NamePinot noir
TasteDry and sweet
Primary FlavorsCherry and raspberry
AcidityBright acidity
Serving Temperature (C)55-60 degrees 
Glass TypeBurgundy
Storage (years)5 years
Wine BodyLight - Medium
Alcohol % (ABV)12-15%

Pinot Noir comes with a rich fruity flavor along with a velvety and vibrant ruby shade. It comes with a consortium of distinct flavors each maintaining its individuality.

With a dry taste and full-bodied texture, Pinot Noir comes in distinct flavors like smokey, fruity, and earthy notes.

Pinot Noir comes with few tannins and less acidity making it a perfect pair for chicken marsala as it doesn’t overpower its meaty taste.

Check out this video to better understand Pinot Noir:

2. Chardonnay

TasteSweet and dry
Primary FlavorsApple and lemon
AcidityModerately acidic
Serving Temperature (C)50 degrees  
Glass TypeTraditional white wine glass
Storage (years)3-7 years
Wine BodyFull
Alcohol % (ABV)13.5 to 14.5%

Chardonnay comes with a neutral flavor. It comes with subtle notes of citrus, blossom, apple, and almonds. It’s medium-bodied along with medium acidity and moderate to high alcohol levels.

Its dry taste and light golden shade make it visually appealing. With each sip, you experience a different flavor every time.

Chardonnay is a good pairing option for chicken marsala as it suits a variety of ingredients that go in the making of the dish, for instance, mushrooms, garlic, and asparagus.

Here’s a video to get a complete gest about Chardonnay:

3. Chenin Blanc

NameChenin Blanc
OriginSouth Africa and France
TasteCan be either sweet or dry
Primary FlavorsQuince, yellow apple, pear
Serving Temperature (C)8-10 degrees C
Glass TypeTulip
Storage (years)5-10 years
Wine BodyLight -Medium-bodied
Alcohol % (ABV)12-14.5% (South African)

Chenin Blanc is an aromatic and mineral-based white wine. It’s a versatile wine that goes with most of the dishes incredibly well.

It has an expressive terroir as the climate and soil of the vineyard decide the wine taste.

Chenin Blanc has an exceptional ability to produce age-worthy sweet wine as well as fine dry wines.

Chenin Blanc is a medium-bodied wine with fewer tannins, moderate alcohol levels, and high acidity making it one of the best beverages for chicken marsala.

Check out this short video about Chenin Blanc:

4. Frappato

Primary FlavorsDried strawberry, white pepper, tobacco
Serving Temperature (C)12-15 degrees C
Glass TypeAroma collector
Storage (years)1-3 years
Wine BodyMedium-light bodied
Alcohol % (ABV)11.5-13.5%

Frappato is a red wine with fruity flavors and moderate tannin levels. It comes with the sweetness of fruits and spicy notes making it a delectable option to go for.

It’s a highly drinkable wine that is juicy, aromatic, low in alcohol levels, and accompanied by earthy, floral, and fruity flavors.

Frappato has a light-bodied texture and high acidity which suits and complements the meaty flavor of chicken marsala.

Click on the below-given link to know more about Frappato:

5. Malbec

Primary FlavorsRed plum, blackberry, vanilla
AcidityMedium- low acidic
Serving Temperature (C)15- 20 degrees C
Glass TypeUniversal
Storage (years)5-10 years
Wine BodyFull-bodied
Alcohol % (ABV)13.5- 15 %

Malbec is a red wine that comes with a great structure and a chocolatey feel on the tongue. It comes with a soft and smooth texture, leaving you craving for more.

It’s lower in acidity than most wines, has moderate tannin levels, and has a full wine body. It’s a great option for people who’d like to avoid bitterness.

Malbec pairs exceptionally well with chicken dishes, like chicken marsala due to its moderate tannins and medium acidity levels.

To better understand the nuances of Malbec, check out this quick video:

6. Gamay

Primary FlavorsSour Cherry, Raspberry, Currant, Cranberry, and Strawberry
AcidityHighly Acidic
Serving Temperature (C)17 - 20 degrees
Glass TypeBurgundy Wine Glass
Storage (years)1 - 3 years
Wine BodyLight-bodied
Alcohol % (ABV)10 - 11%

Gamay is articulately known for its light-bodied texture, high acidity, and low tannin levels. It’s a red wine also known as Gamay Noir as it holds a close resemblance to Pinot Noir in terms of wine body and taste.

Gamay is an excellent pick for meaty dishes like chicken marsala due to its light wine body and fruity flavors with hints of spice.

Get to learn more about Gamay through this quick video:

7. Viognier

TasteFruity and creamy
Primary FlavorsTangerine, mango, honeysuckle, and vanilla
AcidityLow acidity
Serving Temperature (C)50 degrees  
Glass TypeTraditional white wine glass
Storage (years)5-6 years
Wine BodyMedium bodied
Alcohol % (ABV)13.5 to 15%

Viognier is a white wine, primarily with fruity flavors. Its intensity ranges from light to spritz depending upon the manufacturer and how it is made.

It comes with hints of bitterness that surely won’t bother people who aren’t a fan of bitter wines. It has fewer tannins, a full-bodied texture, and moderate alcohol levels.

The fruity and subtle bitterness of Viognier perfectly strikes a balance when paired with a savory chicken marsala dish.

Discover more about Viognier through this insightful video:

8. Grenache

OriginSpain, France
Primary FlavorsGrilled plum, leather, dried herbs
Serving Temperature (C)15-20 degrees C
Glass TypeUniversal
Storage (years)10+ years
Wine BodyMedium to full-bodied
Alcohol % (ABV)More than 15%

Grenache is a red wine with juicy red fruit flavors with a dash of cinnamon-like spice. It’s thin-skinned and has a similar profile to that of Pinot Noir.

It comes with high alcohol content and moderate tannin levels. Grenache is available in a variety of styles, namely, dry, semi-dry, and sweet.

A medium-bodied white wine with moderate tannins and acidity is simply the best option to turn to for pairing with chicken marsala.

Get insights regarding Grenache through this video:

Wine Pairing Guide for Chicken Marsala

Chicken Marsala predominately goes with either a light-bodied red wine, for instance, Pinot Noir and Malbec, or a full-bodied white wine like Chardonnay.

Chicken Marsala comes with a creamy and savory taste so you need to go with a wine that complements and balances its natural taste without overpowering the meaty flavors of chicken and mushrooms.

The sauce added to the dish contains heavy cream and mushrooms. Hence, it’s advisable to pair it with lighter wine variants.

The acidity of Chardonnay has an unmatched potential to complement chicken marsala. Similarly, the fruity flavors of Pinot Noir make it a delight to reminisce.

All About Marsala Wine

Marsala wine is a fortified variant that comes from the valleys of Sicily. It’s a commonly used ingredient for preparing a wide range of dishes to generate a caramelized, nutty, and rich sauce.

Mostly dry Marsala is used and is an excellent addition to a chef’s kitchen.

Marsala comes with a fusion of a variety of flavors like vanilla, apricot, brown sugar, tobacco, and tamarind. High-end Marsala comes with more nuanced flavors like apple, cherry, honey, walnut, and licorice.


What is chicken marsala sauce made of?

Chicken Marsala is a timeless dish made from a rich and creamy sauce. The sauce includes a variety of ingredients like heavy cream, Marsala wine, and mushrooms. It comes with a mildly sweet taste, all thanks to the Marsala wine added to it.

Which grapes are used to make Marsala wine?

Marsala wine is prepared from a squad of a large range of grapes, namely, Catarratto, Damaschino, Inzolia, and Grillo. Fortified Marsala comes supplemented with distilled spirit, for instance, brandy.

Red wine or white wine, which is a better option for chicken marsala?

The wine you select is based on its body, acidity, and alcohol levels. Hence, either of the two wines will work provided the chicken flavor doesn’t get shadowed by the wine.

Bottom Line

Now that you’ve made it to the end, I hope this article was useful enough for people who’re on a hunt to find their ideal wine for chicken marsala.

Don’t forget to share with us your ideal wine pair for chicken marsala, in case we missed out on it.

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About Jane Lewis

Jane loves spending time with her family, cooking delicious meals, traveling to explore new cultures and wines, and tending to her backyard garden. She's a passionate home cook who enjoys trying out recipes from all over the world.