Vermouth, thanks to the wide variety of aromas and flavors it contains, is a drink that pairs very well with a wide variety of dishes. Although the most common is that the “vermouth hour” is enjoyed with some olives and some chips, it can also be combined with some seafood such as mussels and cockles, but we do not stop there, there are many more tapas that pair with the vermouth.
Vermouth is one of the drinks that can have the greatest variety of flavors and aromas. This is because it can be made with a mixture of herbs, which usually varies depending on the area in which it is made. In addition, vermouth can be white, black or pink, which also makes it taste drier, sweeter or more aromatic and botanical.
Vermouth can be paired with many foods and, best of all, it can be combined with meals and light dishes, such as tapas, which serves to whet the appetite for our main course. In Spain, vermouth has been used in this way for a long time.
In this sense, white vermouth is usually combined with all kinds of fish and seafood dishes, such as natural cockles, clams, pickled mussels or Roman squid. However, it also goes great with a cheese board, Iberian ham and even with cold meats.
The red vermouth, which has a slightly more bitter and intense flavor, pairs wonderfully with tapas and ingredients with a stronger flavor. For example, some natural anchovies, some anchovies in vinegar, baby squid in their ink, octopus with Galician sauce, pickled sardines or scallops.
In addition, red vermouth, due to its botanical and slightly bitter taste, also goes well with sweet dishes, such as desserts and many pastas.
But the best thing is always to combine it with light tops, like the ones we present below.
Vermouth is an ideal companion for good pintxos. These accompanying pieces of bread can be made from almost anything. For example, if we want to accompany white vermouths, we can prepare some pintxos with salmon rolls, yogurt cream or some type of fresh cheese. While a red vermouth, it can be accompanied by a fresh tomato pintxo with pickled cockles or fresh tomato with Iberian ham.
seafood and fish
Do you prefer white vermouth? Like white wine, the best vermouth goes perfectly with any type of seafood. You can combine it with a portion of natural clams, some grilled prawns or some prawns. It also goes very well with sea snails or some raw razor clams with a little lemon.
If you prefer fish, you should look for dishes with natural fish and, if possible, with more neutral flavors. For example, sardines in oil or natural or tuna belly in oil.
Vermouth also goes very well with all kinds of nuts. For example, white vermouth pairs great with good almonds, hazelnuts or Brazil nuts. While the red vermouth, sticks more with nuts that have a slightly stronger flavor such as peanuts.
Both vermouths go very well with olives, although yes, white vermouth pairs better with lighter olive preparations such as manzanilla, stuffed, chopped or soda. On the other hand, red vermouth will go better with the tastiest olives such as gazpachas or vinegared ones, which usually have a pickle inside.
How to pair vermouth according to its preparation?
The way the vermouth is prepared will also slightly vary its flavor, which will make it more suitable to combine with certain foods. Thus, the traditional vermouth, which is prepared in a wide glass, with lots of ice, a splash of lemon and a slice of lemon, is a fresh and slightly acidic drink, which is why it is perfect to accompany some fries and mussels. This is the typical vermouth and pairing from the south of Alicante and the Murcia area.
In Andalusia, vermouth is prepared in the same way, only the lemon slice is changed for an orange one. This makes the vermouth taste sweeter, perfect to accompany a plate of grilled prawns or some fried anchovies.
In some places in Spain, a third of white wine was added to the vermouth and a lot of ice, this was done because some vermouths were diluted with water. By adding white wine, flavors and botanical aromas are enhanced. This type of vermouth pairs very well with olives, natural, steamed or pickled mussels, clams and all kinds of fish or shellfish tapas, for example, a good Galician octopus.
In the area of Catalonia and Valencia, vermouth is traditionally drunk with a siphon jet, which is nothing more than carbonated water. This vermouth is served with very little ice and, in most cases, without any ice at all. In some areas a slice of lemon or orange is added. The result is a lighter vermouth, with less intensity and a slightly salty flavor due to the siphon, which pairs perfectly with good toasted almonds, hazelnuts, fried peanuts with skin, Iberian ham, bread with olive oil and paprika and, of course, with some stuffed olives.
Finally, white vermouth can be combined with vodka, in the style of James Bond. For this cocktail, the white vermouth must be very cold, since it is served without ice. In addition, it has a very strong and dry flavor due to the vodka, so it should be combined with strong-flavored shellfish such as cockles.