Ham is a cured meat that is sweet, salty, and rich. There are many variations, such as Prosciutto, Spam or Canadian Bacon, which we aren’t covering in this blog, but will cover in the future. For now, our Wine Pairing Database will offer you recommendations. In this blog, we are covering your common baked Ham that you would serve up at Easter, Thanksgiving or during the holidays.
Best Pairings with Ham
- Pinot Noir
- Irish Stout
New World Pinot Noir and Black Forest Ham
With the sweetness and saltiness of Ham, you typically want a wine that is medium-bodied and fruity. A new world Pinot Noir from New Zealand or California fits this profile. More substantial wines like a Cabernet Sauvignon or Shiraz won’t complement the sweetness of the wine due to their high tannin, nor will they be as refreshing when matched against the Ham’s saltiness.
A new world Pinot Noir is higher in acidity than tannin, and a little bit jammy, so each sip will be refreshing.
Riesling and Honey Glazed Ham
An off-dry Riesling works well with sweeter styles of Ham like a Honey Glazed Ham or Glazed Baked Ham. Riesling is bursting with apple and citrus flavour, which makes it go well with ham as you often see Pineapple going well with this meat. Again the sweetness of the wine complements the sweetness of the ham. Meanwhile the bright acidity and fruit flavours are refreshing against the salty backdrop of the meat.
Rosé and Ham Dinner
Not only is Ham sweet and salty, when you include the rest of the side dishes, you have a lot to contend with. Rosé with its acidity and slight sweetness will do wonders. Again this wine will complement any sweetness in the Ham or side dishes, plus it will come off as refreshing.
If it’s a brunch, Rosé will stand up just fine against any other side dishes that might include Eggs Benedict, Salmon, Pancakes, Hash Browns and French Toast. If you’re dining at night, you’ll find Rosé going well with Turkey, Sweet Potatoes, Light Salads, and Lamb.
Irish Stout and Ham
An Irish Stout is a beautiful match with Ham. The dry finish of the beer draws out the saltiness of the meat and elevates the juicy flavours you love. The more intense the Ham flavours, the better the pairing!
Beaujolais-Villages and Ham Sandwiches
If you’ve cooked up a Ham, you’ve undoubtedly have leftovers remaining for the next week. Western Sandwiches, Split Pea and Ham Soup, and Ham Sandwiches are some delicious meals you have to look forward to.
With a Ham Sandwich, you’re not having a heavy meal, so a Beaujolais makes an excellent pairing partner. Beaujolais are not high in alcohol. The dark cherries and strawberries flavours, along with a lovely spice undertone, add some depth to the sandwich. Meanwhile, the acidity in the wine washes away any ham, mustard and mayo components with ease.
Do you have a favourite Ham and Food Pairing? Let us know in the comments below!