10 Best Smoked Salmon & Wine Pairing Ideas


Quick Answer: Best Smoked Salmon & Wine Pairing

Smoked salmon complements white wines more than red ones. It tastes its best when paired with wines like Chenin Blanc, Chardonnay, Riesling, Pinot Gris, Champagne, Gewurztraminer, Sauvignon Blanc, Syrah, Beaujolais, and Manzanilla Sherry. Pair any of these wines with smoked salmon for a zingy dining experience.

This is a detailed guide to help you find the best wine to compliment your smoked salmon dish.

Let’s get started.

But first, let’s get to know a bit more about smoked salmon before we get to know the details about the best wines to pair it with.

About Smoked Salmon

Smoked salmon is often misunderstood for lox, but there’s a difference.

Lox is cured while smoked salmon, as the name suggests, is prepared by smoking.

The salmon fillet goes through either cold or hot smoke. Due to its higher price, this dish is considered a delicacy.

So, are you gushing over some smoked salmon already? But before that let’s find the perfect wine match for it.

Best Smoked Salmon & Wine Pairing Ideas

1. 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 a versatile white wine that can be enjoyed in a variety of ways.

Whether you’re looking for a refreshing summertime sipper or a complex and layered wine to pair with food, Chenin Blanc is a great option.

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

Its light, refreshing flavor pairs well with smoked salmon, making it an ideal choice for a meal.

The wine’s acidity helps to cut through the richness of the salmon, while its subtle sweetness complements the smoky flavor of the fish.

Check out this short video about Chenin Blanc:

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 is a white wine that can be enjoyed in a variety of ways.

Whether you’re looking for a light and refreshing wine to enjoy on a warm summer day, or a rich and creamy wine to pair with your favorite meal, Chardonnay is sure to please.

Chardonnay comes with a neutral flavor. It comes with subtle notes of citrus, blossom, apple, and almonds.

The creamy texture and subtle oak flavor of Chardonnay complement the rich taste of smoked salmon.

The acidity in Chardonnay also helps to cut through the fat in smoked salmon, making it a refreshing and light pairing.

Chardonnay is a good pairing option for smoked salmon as its mild fruity flavors won’t overpower the meat’s natural taste.

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

3. Riesling

Primary FlavorsLime, green apple, jasmine
Serving Temperature (C)3-7 degrees C
Glass TypeWhite
Storage (years)10+ years
Wine BodyLight-bodied
Alcohol % (ABV)Under 10%

Riesling is a white wine grape that originates from the Rhine region in Germany.

It is widely planted throughout Europe and the New World, and is known for its floral aromatics and fruity flavors. Riesling wines are typically medium-bodied with high acidity and can range from dry to sweet.

It comes in several variants like dry, semi-dry, and sweet as well as sparkling white wine.

Riesling wine is a versatile white wine that can be paired with a variety of different foods.

One of its most popular pairings is with smoked salmon. The light and refreshing flavors of Riesling complement the rich and salty flavors of smoked salmon perfectly.

Additionally, the acidity in Riesling helps to cut through the fat in smoked salmon, making it an ideal pairing for those looking for a lighter option.

Get more details about Riesling through this quick video:

4. Pinot Gris

NamePinot Gris
TasteFresh and spicy
Primary FlavorsTropical fruit, stone fruit, citrus
AcidityRelatively low acidity
Serving Temperature (C)45-50 degrees  
Glass TypeChardonnay white wine glass
Storage (years)1-4 years
Wine BodyMedium to light
Alcohol % (ABV)13.5 to 14%

Pinot Gris is a white wine with fruity flavors and strong aromas of honey, almond, ginger, spice, and clove.

Pinot Gris is a white wine that originates from the Pinot Gris grape.

It is a versatile wine that can be enjoyed with a variety of foods. Pinot Gris has a light, fruity flavor with hints of citrus and melon.

Its light body and delicate flavor make it a perfect pairing for smoked salmon. The wine’s acidity helps to cut through the richness of the salmon, while its subtle fruitiness complements the smoky flavor of the fish.

It’s a light wine that generates a tingling sensation the moment you sip it.

Pinot Gris is a zesty wine with a refreshing acidity level, making it suitable for meaty dishes like smoked salmon.

Dive deeper into the world of Pinot Gris through this video:

5. Champagne

Primary FlavorsCitrus, yellow apple, cream
Serving Temperature (C)3.3- 7.3 degrees C
Glass TypeFlute
Storage (years)5-20 years
Wine BodyLight-bodied
Alcohol % (ABV)12.20%

Champagne is the perfect blend of grapes like Pinot Meunier, Pinot Noir, and Chardonnay and is exclusively prepared in the Champagne region of France.

That’s how it gets its name.

It is a sparkling white wine that generates a velvety feel in every sip.

The light, bubbly nature of champagne enhances the delicate flavor of smoked salmon, while the acidity in the wine cuts through the richness of the fish.

When choosing champagne to pair with smoked salmon, look for a dry style with moderate acidity.

6. Gewurztraminer

Primary FlavorsLychee, rose, grapefruit
Serving Temperature (C)3-7 degrees C
Glass TypeWhite
Storage (years)3-5 years
Wine BodyMedium-bodied
Alcohol % (ABV)13.5-15 %

Gewurztraminer is a white wine grape variety that is typically very aromatic.

The wines made from this grape are often off-dry to sweet and can have strong floral and spice notes. Gewurztraminer is a popular choice for pairing with food, as its bold flavors can stand up to richer dishes.

It has nominal levels of tannins. The Gewurztraminer grapes are a mutated version of Sauvignon Blanc grapes.

Gewurztraminer is a classic pairing option with smoked salmon as it complements the smoky vibe of the dish due to its slightly sweet taste.

Learn the basics of Gewurztraminer through this video:

7. Sauvignon Blanc

NameSauvignon Blanc
TasteDry and fruity
Primary FlavorsBlackcurrant, cedar, oaks, herbs
AcidityHighly acidic
Serving Temperature (C)59-68 degrees 
Glass TypeBordeaux / Standard red
Storage (years)7-10 years
Wine BodyMedium to full
Alcohol % (ABV)Over 13.5%

Sauvignon Blanc is a refreshing, crisp white wine with vibrant acidity. It has aromas of citrus, green apple, and tropical fruits. Sauvignon Blanc pairs well with seafood, poultry, and salads.

This gives it a refreshing feel in every sip as you experience a tingly sensation.

The dry taste along with medium-bodied texture and fruity notes like grapefruit, passion fruit, and white peach gives Sauvignon Blanc an identity of its own.

The crispiness and peppery notes of Sauvignon Blanc go flawlessly well with smoked salmon. The acidity in the wine helps to cut through the richness of the salmon, making it a perfect pairing.

Check out this video about Sauvignon Blanc:

8. Syrah

OriginRhone Valley, France
Primary FlavorsBlueberry, black plum, milk chocolate
Serving Temperature (C)15-20 degrees C
Glass TypeUniversal
Storage (years)10+ years
Wine BodyFull-bodied
Alcohol % (ABV)13.5-15%

Syrah is a dark-skinned grape primarily used to produce red wine. It is also known as Shiraz.

Syrah is a rich and full-bodied red wine with intense flavors of blackberry, pepper, and spice.

It is a perfect wine for pairing with hearty meats and rich cheeses. Syrah is sure to please any red wine lover!

The bold, fruity flavors of the wine stand up to the rich, smoky flavors of the salmon, and the two work together to create a truly delicious dish.

Also, its acidity levels are perfect to cut through the fats present in the meat.

To better understand Syrah traits, check out this quick video:

9. Beaujolais

Primary FlavorsRed Cherry, Raspberry, Currant, Cranberry, and Strawberry
AcidityMedium - Highly Acidic
Serving Temperature (C)11 - 14 degrees
Glass TypeBurgundy Wine Glass
Storage (years)2 - 3 years
Wine BodyLight-bodied
Alcohol % (ABV)12.5 - 13.5%

Beaujolais wine is a light, fruity red wine from the Beaujolais region of France.

It is made from the Gamay grape and is typically lighter and less tannic than other red wines. Beaujolais wine is best served slightly chilled and pairs well with food such as grilled meats, poultry, and fish.

It’s a red wine produced from Gamay grapes with a low percentage of Pinot Noir grapes in it.

Beaujolais is an excellent pick for a delicious smoked salmon dish due to its light wine body and fruity flavors, as it doesn’t overpower the meat’s natural flavor. It pairs well with smoked salmon because the acidity helps to cut through the richness of the fish.

Get to learn more about Beaujolais through this quick video:

10. Manzanilla Sherry

NameManzanilla Sherry
Primary FlavorsAlmond, Dough, and Chamomile
AcidityMildly Acidic
Serving Temperature (C)4 - 9 degrees
Glass TypeWhite Wine Glass
Storage (years)1 - 2 years
Wine BodyLight-bodied
Alcohol % (ABV)15 - 17%

Manzanilla Sherry wine is a type of white wine made in the Andalusia region of Spain.

It is made from the Palomino grape and has a light, delicate flavor. Manzanilla Sherry is perfect for enjoying on its own or with light appetizers.

Manzanilla Sherry is a white wine that comes with salty mineral notes and a typical Chamomile aroma. It’s a fortified white wine i.e., a distilled spirit, generally, brandy is added to the wine.

The flavors in Manzanilla Sherry along with its acidity, tannins, and alcohol levels make it an ideal wine pair for smoked salmon. The light, delicate flavor of the wine complements the rich, smoky flavor of the salmon perfectly.

Learn more about Manzanilla Sherry through this video:

Wine Pairing Guide for Smoked Salmon

The smoky feel of smoked salmon can be complimented well when paired with a spicy glass of Gewurztraminer. A glass of white Burgundy also works wonders due to its rich texture and intense fruity flavors.

A fizzy glass of Champagne or any other sparkling wine variant can form a flawless combination with smoked salmon.

Champagne Blanc de blanc is the best option to turn to for wine pairing with smoked salmon.

Red wines often come with smoky notes that ideally should suit the smoky vibes of smoked salmon.

But that’s not the case here, red wines come with robust tannins that may disrupt the saline taste of the fish.

Dry, mineral-based white wines are an excellent option to resort to for pairing it with smoked salmon.

Avoid opting for a too old and rustic wine rather settle for a young white wine with a light wine body and strong aroma.

Best Recipes You Can Woock with Smoked Salmon

Smoked salmon can be used to prepare a variety of dishes like smoked salmon bagel pizza, hot smoked salmon pasta, smoked salmon French toast, smoked salmon with brown rice, creamy salmon risoni, kale, and noodle plate, buckwheat, and zucchini blini with smoked salmon, eggs in pots with smoked salmon, and crumbed asparagus with smoked salmon are a few recipes to try your hands on.


What are the health benefits of smoked salmon?

Eating smoked salmon covers a variety of health benefits like improved brain health, mitigates the risks of cardiovascular diseases and cognitive decline, battles inflammation, reduces anxiety, and aids in maintaining ideal body weight.

Which side dishes pair well with smoked salmon?

Smoked salmon can be paired with a couple of side dishes like baked potatoes, steamed asparagus, sweet potato hash, green beans, dill chives, creamed spinach, steamed broccoli, sauteed mushrooms, fresh green salad, steamed cauliflower, and brussels sprouts.

Apart from wine, which other beverages go well with smoked salmon?

Apart from wine, you can pair salmon with drinks like wheat beer, malt whiskey, aquavit, and vodka. For non-alcoholic options, a glass of lemonade will do the trick.

Bottom Line

Now that you’ve made it to the end, I hope this article was useful enough for you to locate your ideal wine pair for smoked salmon.

If you found this article useful do share it with your loved ones.

Also, don’t forget to share with us your ideal wine pair for smoked salmon, in case we missed out on it.

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About Maria Brown

Maria loves movies and is a bit of a movie buff. She especially enjoys romantic comedies and comic flicks. Her sweet tooth gets the best of her often, so she loves baking and cooking a variety of dishes. She loves exploring drinks, especially wines.

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