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Pairings can be arrived upon by means of simple experiments. If one thinks that the combination of products tastes good and works well together then that is a pairing. We are constantly creating pairings on our own.
Most of us are aware that wine and cheese work well together and so do beer and fried foods. Pizza pairs with beer and wine both. These pairings are timeless and even the thought of these experiences are enough to make us salivate.
Classic duos to surprising twists
Pairings work on the principle of contrasts. Sweet does not bode well with sweet. Neither does spicy with spicy. However sweet and spicy work very well together. Likewise, bitter and sweet also make for excellent bedfellows.
The astringency of green gold tea cuts right through the richness of New York Cheesecake.
We can also have a contrast of temperature, for example vanilla ice cream with hot chocolate sauce. Marriage made on Earth. Butter spread on freshly toasted bread - one of the best flavors on Earth. We also love having cold drinks and chilled water with our hot foods (both temperature and chili level wise).
Sweet and salty apple pie with a tangy rosehip hibiscus tea is a pairing that will stun your senses.
Bitter and sweet also make for excellent bedfellows. Case in point being tiramisu with muscatel black tea. The rich, creamy and luxurious flavor of mascarpone cream cheese which is cheese made from the milk of grass fed cows and has triple the fat content provides the perfect backdrop to celebrate the muscatel flavor in.
Tiramisu’s sugary richness with hints of bitterness creates the perfect backdrop for Muscatel’s unique crisp flavour.
Umami is a newly discovered flavor and green tea, especially gyokuro is known to contain it in abundance. This makes for very interesting pairings since a lot of foods have naturally occuring umami which when paired with the tea makes for a very satisfying and exciting discovery. Examples of food containing umami are soy sauce, cheese especially parmesan, tomatoes and seaweed.
In each instance of the pairing, the tea acts as a palate cleanser and helps to discover hidden and secret flavors in the food.