Aspargus & Wine

Asparagus's slightly bitter notes can, however, make it a tricky partner when it comes to wine. It often clashes when paired with the standard fruit-driven varietals. Possible alternatives: Silvaner, Weißburgunder, Grauburgunder and Rivaner (Müller-Thurgau). With their round acidity and delicate fruity aromas — reminiscent of pears, apples, nuts and flowers — they lull these savory stalks into submission, even coaxing out a bit of sweetness.

Facts

  • 1 cm

    per day asparagus grows at the start of the season

  • 20-25 days

    asparagus needs until it is "fully grown"

  • June 24

    end of asparagus season

  • 29.000 ha

    asparagus cultivation area in Germany

Wine and Asparagus Pairings

White Asparagus – classic 'Spargel' is a true delicacy with its distinctive juxtaposition of mild, almost sweet and pleasantly bitter flavors. The subtle aromas of Silvaner from Rheinhessen or Franken, as well as Gutedels from Baden provide flavor-rich asparagus with plenty of room to move and breathe.

Violet Asparagus – with slightly richer aromas than its snow-white sibling, and a correspondingly deeper bitter note as well. Weißburgunder, such as a bottle from Baden or a fresh Rivaner from Franken, serve as excellent pairing companions.

Green Asparagus – the color is more intense, as are the aromas. Rich aromas require a wine of suitable and similar weight. Pfalz Rieslings and powerful Grauburgunder and Chardonnay (unoaked) make an ideal complement.

Sauces – the classics include melted butter, chopped eggs, Hollandaise and tartar. Rich sauces benefit from the contrast of a zippy wine pairing. While the fine spirited acidity in Mosel Rieslings serves to lighten a rich sauce, spicier versions demand a wine of considerable expression.

Salads – Asparagus with a mild vinaigrette or a mildly spiced dressing. If using vinegar, try white wine vinegar mixed with a bit of the asparagus broth. Mild vinaigrette pairs beautifully with a Silvaner from Franken or an off-dry Rheingau Riesling, whose playful acidity ensures that its voice sings bright and clear.

Asparagus with Fish, Meat and Ham

Fish with Asparagus – fresh salmon or arctic char, poached or lightly sautéed in butter, with a touch of Hollandaise sauce — it doesn't get much better than this! Elegant, expressive yet still slightly savory aromas require a balanced wine pairing: A friendly Weißburgunder from the Pfalz or a refreshing Rivaner from Franken represent ideal companions.

Pork – milder when cooked, while the traditional cured variety (from Italy or Spain) delivers a slightly nuttier yet mild spice. The sweet nuances of the asparagus and the saltiness of the ham form beautiful gustatory counterpoints. We recommend Sauvignon Blanc or Silvaner with a delicately fruity character.

Savory meats ask a lot of the fine aromas of the asparagus. Veal or pork cutlet, or a mildly spiced roast, can feature an expressive range of aromas. There are also expressive, robust wines with the rich aromatic range to more than hold their own. For a truly delicious pairing try Weißburgunder, Grauburgunder or Chardonnay such as those from Baden.

Ideas for an Open Air Asparagus Picnic

White wines that pair well with asparagus dishes should be served appropriately chilled. Whether at home or in a restaurant, there's always a solution: Should you find yourself on the beach, bury the chilled bottle in wet sand, or take advantage of the cold from a nearby brook. Or take a peek at one of our wine cooling bags, sleeves or chillers (available in the DWI Gourmet shop). Once pre-chilled in the refrigerator, they keep white wine at a proper serving temperature for a good long while.

So how best to prep the asparagus? Simply, with Hollandaise sauce and baby potatoes? Or a bit more daring: cooked al dente and wrapped in cured, thinly sliced ham (Black Forest, San Daniele, Bayonne, Serrano - whatever suits your taste).  For extra flair, pair with a mild mayonnaise dip accented with yogurt, lemon juice, capers and parsley.

If you would prefer a picnic in the park, and the journey from oven to blanket is not too far, then try filling a puff-pastry with asparagus and dot it with plenty of butter and spice (salt, pepper, nutmeg). Bake in a hot oven and wrap up in aluminum foil to keep warm, or lay on a pan for transport to the park.

A refreshing option: a salad of asparagus, baby potatoes, smoked fish, and a few pieces of lemon and lemon juice dressing, olive oil and mustard, a pinch of sugar, cayenne pepper and salt to taste. Fill into a canning jar, or into several small jars, one for each diner. Any of the asparagus wines will make a beautiful pairing. And now: Enjoy the fresh air!

Why is asparagus called "white gold"?

Asparagus has been grown and consumed since the 16th century. At that time it was the vegetable of the nobility, because asparagus cultivation was costly and the price was correspondingly high. Therefore, asparagus is still called the "noblest" or "king of vegetables", but also "white gold".

More recipe ideas

Tips from Asian cuisine CHINA : Dumpling

German wines have a natural advantage when it comes to entering into perfect harmony with select Asian dishes. With a lower alcohol content, sometimes crisp acidity, moderate residual sweetness or soft tannins in red grape varieties, they are a perfect match for a variety of styles of Asian cuisine.

  • 500g Flour
  • 240ml Warm water
  • 400g Minced pork
  • 100g Celery
  • 1 TL Salt
  • 1/2 TL Sugar
  • 3 EL Light soy sauce
  • 1 EL Oyster sauce
  • 2 EL Oil
  • 100 ml Water

PREPARATION

 

MAKE DUMPLING WRAPPERS

Pour flour into a large bowl, add 240ml warm water and stir until well-combined.

Wash and dry hands. Dip in some dry flour and knead the dough until it becomes smooth.

Place the dough in a bowl, cover with plastic wrap and set aside for 1 hour.

 


MAKE DUMPLING STUFFING

Mix minced pork, salt, sugar, light soy sauce, oyster sauce, oil and 100ml water, stir well and refrigerate for 2 hours.

Chop the celery and pat dry with kitchen towel.

Take the pork out of the fridge, add chopped celery and stir well.

 


MAKE DUMPLINGS

Divide the dough into 8g pieces.

Rub the dough with a rolling pin and press into a circle about 7cm in diameter.

Take 15g stuffing and put it in the center of the dumpling wrapper. Fold the wrappers, use fingers to press the edges together.

 


BOIL DUMPLINGS

Fill in a clean pot with water, and bring to the boil. Pour in an appropriate amount of dumplings according to the size of the pot, and boil them until they rise to the surface.

Take out the dumplings and serve.

  • Pinot Blanc (trocken)
  • Pinot Blanc (halbtrocken & feinherb)
  • Silvaner (trocken)
  • Silvaner (halbtrocken & feinherb)
  • Spätburgunder / Pinot Noir (trocken)
  • Spätburgunder / Pinot Noir (halbtrocken & feinherb)

Tips from Japanese cuisine JAPAN : Soy braised pork

German wines have a natural advantage when it comes to entering into perfect harmony with selected Asian dishes. With a lighter alcohol content, sometimes crisp acidity, moderate residual sweetness or soft tannins in the case of red grape varieties, they are a perfect match for a wide range of styles of Asian cuisine.

  • 1 kg Pork belly
  • 120 ml German white wine
  • 80 ml Soy sauce
  • 80 ml Honey
  • 50 ml Water
  • 4 cm Leek (green part)
  • 3 Ginger (thin slices)
  • 4 Boiled eggs
  • 1 Vegetables such as Chinese cabbage

PREPARATION

 

1. Cut the pork belly into large pieces to fit your pan.

Put the frying pan on high heat. When it gets hot, add pork belly, browning all sides, and then put in a saucepan. Add enough water to completely cover the meat.

Add ginger and leek and put on high heat.


2. When it starts to boil, turn the heat down low and boil for around 1.5 hours until the meat is soft (test with a fork). If it is drying out, add more water and let the dish boil slowly.


3. Let the soup cool down, then remove the meat and cut into blocks of about 4-5 cm square. (If you cool it down well at this stage, the meat will not become dry.)


4. Put meat and all the other seasoning except soy sauce, into a new pan (which fits the meat neatly) and heat. When it boils, turn the heat to low and cook for around 5 mins, then add soy sauce.


5. Place a plate, which fits snugly into the pan, directly on the meat (a drop lid is also acceptable). Boil for about 30 minutes.


6. Remove pork from the pan, put the boiled eggs and green vegetable to season them, and boil the broth to half the volume.

Put the meat back in and mix well with the broth. Put meat on a plate, add boiled egg or boiled green vegetables and pour over broth.

 

 

  • Lemberger (trocken)
  • Dornfelder (trocken)
  • Spätburgunder / Pinot Noir (trocken)
  • Lemberger (halbtrocken & feinherb)
  • Dornfelder (halbtrocken & feinherb)
  • Spätburgunder / Pinot Noir (halbtrocken & feinherb)