What Wine Goes With Lamb?

Whether you’re cooking up a rack of lamb or preparing a hearty lamb stew, you’ll want the perfect wine to pair with your meal. Because the flavor of lamb can be described as robust, you’ll want to be very intentional about choosing the very best wine to serve with lamb.

Best Wine With Lamb

The ideal lamb wine pairing is influenced by several factors, including the origin of the lamb itself. Lamb from Australia or New Zealand has a gamey flavor, while the taste of lamb from the U.S. is milder. Additionally, you’ll want to consider the ingredients you’re using in your dish to find the wine that will enhance your culinary experience.

Red Wine With Lamb

Full-bodied red wines pair particularly well with lamb. However, you want to be cautious and not choose a robust wine that will overpower the flavors of the lamb. For young lamb that’s served pink, Pinot Noir is an excellent choice. The earthy notes and red berry flavors lend themselves well to the delicate meat.

White Wine With Lamb

While most lamb dishes are best served with red wine, you can pour from a bottle of white as well. An oaked Chardonnay is particularly tasty with lamb that’s been prepared with rosemary or other fresh herbs.

Wine With Lamb by Cut

The cut of meat you’re serving and how you’re preparing it also influences your choice of wine. 

Lamb Shanks

Lamb shanks are a flavorful cut of meat, and if roasted for a long time, are fall-off-the-bone tender and delicious. If you’re roasting lamb shanks, we recommend you pair your meal with a Grenache wine. Juicy, ripe red fruit flavors with hints of cinnamon make it an excellent choice to accompany your meal.

Rack of Lamb

The flavors of a rack of lamb are earthier than beef ribs. If you’re preparing it herb encrusted, an oaked Sauvignon Blanc offers a good contrast with its crisp, green fruit flavor and notes of toast and vanilla. If you prefer red, Malbec is an excellent choice featuring smooth, chocolatey notes with black cherry and raspberry flavors. 

Lamb Chops

Rich and savory, lamb chops prepared with fresh herbs and garlic couple beautifully with both Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot. The former is full-bodied with dark fruit flavors and hints of black and bell pepper. The latter has soft tannins and is easy to drink with its flavors of cherries and chocolate.

Lamb Stew

Both tender and flavorful, lamb stew is a hearty meal made with tougher cuts of meat that are braised and cooked until well done. The fattiness and juiciness of the lamb calls for a wine that has strong fruit flavors like a Syrah. The fruit-forward wine tastes of blueberry and blackberry with savory notes of black pepper, tobacco, and licorice. 

Final Thoughts

No matter what cut you choose or how you prepare it, lamb paired with the right wine offers a savory taste experience to delight the palate and satisfy the most discerning diner.