Super Picks for the Super Bowl

High class alternatives to pair with typical game day fare.

Like many football fans, you're probably gearing up for a great gridiron contest on Super Bowl Sunday. Whether you're hosting the whole gang or heading out to a friend's, as a wine enthusiast, you may be wondering if there are appropriate wines to go with typical, game-day fare.

While several wines might be up to the challenge, a few seem especially well suited for the big day. This is obviously not the time to break out your vintage Bordeaux, but inexpensive wines with straightforward, simple flavors that lend themselves to casual food will work well.

One choice might be the nutty aromas and flavors of a Fino Sherry. These wines become a perfect counterpart to the salty olives, almonds and tapas enjoyed in Spain's tapas bars and can be an equally fine match for your salty snacks or chips and dips.

To complement more substantial fare, a fruit bomb wine may be just the ticket for drinking with heros, wings and barbecue. For example, the bold, explosive fruit-forward cherry and berry flavors of nearly any Australian Shiraz would work wonderfully.

With pizza and other Italian fare, the quintessential match is a nice Chianti, but if Asian or spicy foods are on the menu, the aromatic floral, citrus and peach notes of Rieslings are a natural choice to pair with them. However, heavily tannic wines should be avoided, as the tannin will intensify the effect of the heat in your mouth. 

Finally, the freshness and slight effervescence of a Portugese Vino Verde could also serve as an excellent foil for most of these food choices. These lower alcohol wines are terrific for quaffing, especially if the game goes into overtime. Whichever wine you choose, gather together with good friends, cheer on your favorite team and enjoy the game. 

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