Matching music with wine

By Joelle Thomson

Even the most dismal of wines can be rescued and uplifted by a decent song, by MiNDFOOD wine blogger Joelle Thomson.

We’ve all been to parties where the people, the music and the wine seemed so perfect that we never wanted to leave. But we’ve all been to terrible parties too.  

Parties where the music was too loud, too quiet, too dull or just so out of tune with the people present that you felt like going home immediately and playing something outrageous, just to prove your senses were still intact. And wine. Don’t get me started.

Well, okay then. This is a wine blog, after all, and the point of this one is to show that even modest bottles can take on the warmest of glows, if matched to the right music.

As I write, luxury is on my mind and my palate. Literally. Another sip of Dom Perignon, another few notes of the gorgeous golden voice of Neneh Cherry singing a surprisingly melodic song on Groove Armada’s Best Of album.

Usually I’d choose soft dance music as my personal ultimate match with posh champagne, but surprises happen when you least expect them. And even though Neneh Cherry seems retro to me, she sounds perfect with one of the most expensive, luxurious and delicious bubblies on the planet.

Some of the best wine and music experiences happen at the worst of times too. What better match than to cap off a major relationship break-up than Nirvana with vintage port.

Or if your car has been broken into, you’ve had the worst week at work imaginable or your best friend has died, Born to Be Wild served with an intensely alcoholic shiraz is sure to drown out any feelings of pain.

In fact it’s likely to drown out any feelings at all. I’m not embarrassed to admit loving vintage Madonna with sherry when I was just getting a taste for quirky wine styles in the early ‘90s, although a fellow wine lover suggests he’d rather hear Madonna in her heyday while drinking low alcohol moscato. Touché.

My favourite wine and music matches this month have been riesling with Handel’s Messiah, gewürztraminer with Ace Ventura and burgundy with Rachmaninov, although I’d rather it had been Barolo, but that’s just so hard to find. But I digress.

Then again, Soul by Ekto has amazing musical build-up with a weighty Waipara pinot noir and Bebel Gilberto sounds beautiful with a delicate Mosel Riesling. And before I go, I’ve got to add that Kiwi jazz muso extraordinaire, Nathan Haines’ Shift Left album sounds just right served with a small glass of chilled, bone dry Manzanilla.

So much music and wine, so little time…

If you had to choose a music-with-wine-match instead of a last meal, what would it be?


Print Recipe

You may also like


Let us keep you up to date with our weekly MiNDFOOD e-newsletters which include the weekly menu plan, health and news updates or tempt your taste buds with the MiNDFOOD Daily Recipe. 

Member Login