A buttery Chardonnay or a crisp Champagne pairs best with lobster served in a variety of styles, especially Steamed Lobster, or even Lobster Thermidor. Flavourful wines like Gewürztraminer, Riesling, Sauvignon Blanc, Viognier or Manzanilla Sherry are also exceptional with lobster.
White Burgundy & Lobster
When we talk about White Burgundy, we’re essentially referring to Chardonnay, but what makes it a holy grail with lobster is that this wine is grown in limestone-rich soil. Some White Burgundy, like Côte de Beaune, are oaked, and others like Chablis, Mâconnais and Bourgogne Blanc are not. All of the above will pair well with lobster, however we want to break it down as to what would be best with what lobster dish below.
An Oaked Côte de Beaune is going to be a richer and creamier white wine and as such, we’d pair this with rich lobster dishes like Lobster Thermidor, Lobster Ravioli, Lobster Bisque, or Lobster Newburg. With a Côte de Beaune on its own, you’re going to get fresh apple and lemon aromas, as well as an earthy nose of truffle and toasted almond. The rich powerful flavours of the wine complement and enhance the decadence of the lobster dish, and your mouth will be in heaven!
For fresh lobster caught off the boat in PEI or perhaps Maine, we’d suggest an unoaked White Burgundy. These wines have an essence of minerality that draws out the seafood goodness of fresh lobster. On top of that, you have zippy and lean notes of lime and melon that bring the melding flavours of lobster and Chardonnay to life. Given a choice, we’d suggest the Mâconnais over a Chablis or Bourgogne Blanc for lobster pairing as it simply seems to pair well with everything. However, all three are excellent with boiled or grilled lobster.
Champagne, Blanc de Blancs & Lobster
Champagne from the Blanc de Blancs region is essentially made from Chardonnay, and they are bursting with crisp tart tones and chalky mineral flavours. On the nose, you’ll discover a hint of toastiness along with perfumed apple notes.
What makes this a spectacular pairing with lobster is that these crisp and mineral flavours blend incredibly well with rich lobster meat. Furthermore, any butter or cream in the lobster dish will instantly be scrubbed away, making each bite taste as fresh as the next.
Weissbier and Lobster Pairing
This Bavarian wheat beer is quite surprising as it initially tastes like cloves, bubblegum, green apples, and bananas. Yet the beer is so food-friendly, it can almost accompany any dish. What makes it excellent with lobster is that Weissbier is so light and refreshing, yet it has just enough sweetness to match the lobster meat and draw out those rich lobster flavours.
Weissbier and Wheat Beer are absolutely perfect with a chilled lobster salad!
Manzanilla Sherry and Lobster Pairing
This melding of the the cool east coast with the humid Spain weather is simply a gorgeous pairing. Manzanilla Sherry has a salty, iodine like tang, plus a low level of acidity that complements nearly any lobster (or seafood) dish.
Lobster Bisque and Gewürztraminer Pairing
We suggest an Alsace Gewürztraminer over other Gewürztraminer as styles vary by region, and from our experience Alsace Gewürztraminer pairs best due to its stronger intensity.
Imagine a deep, rich and spicy wine with a strong acid backbone, just bursting with notes of apricot, black pepper, honey and dried fruit. This is a powerful wine that can stand up to the rich and flavoursome lobster bisque. A dry spicy Gewürztraminer is also wonderful with Lobster with Ginger.
Other Lobster Pairings
Riesling, Savignon Blanc, and Viognier are all electrifying with Lobster in a variety of dishes. The zippy tart flavours of Sauvignon Blanc acts like a squeeze of lemon and brightens the delicate meat flavours up. Sauvignon Blanc is also a bit herbaceous, so it will marry well with any vegetables in your dish, or on the side.
Viognier has a slightly spicy quality and will go great with any lobster that has seen some Asian or curry spices. The sweetness of Viognier will tame any spiciness in the lobster dish, allowing you to get past those blunt flavours and experience more of what the dish has to offer.
Finally, Riesling citrus flavours act in the same manner as a Sauvignon Blanc in that it adds a bit of tartness to the party. An off-dry Riesling is just perfect with lobster as it is slightly sweet, and that complements the lobster spectacularly well as lobster meat itself has a sweet component.
Lobster Thermidor & Wine Pairing
Go with an oaky Chardonnay or a Champagne. Lobster Thermidor is a rich French dish consisting of a creamy mixture of cooked lobster meat, egg yolks, and brandy that are all stuffed into a lobster shell. An oaky California Chardonnay or a Côte de Beaune is going to be chock full of vanilla flavours that are going to further enhance the richness of this dish. Meanwhile, a crisp Champagne or Sparkling wine will cut through the richness, making each bite seem as lively as the next.
Lobster Newberg and White Wine Pairings
A Chardonnay will go well with Lobster Newberg, as will a Gewürztraminer.
Lobster Newberg is an American dish made from lobster, butter, cream, eggs, cognac, sherry, and Cayenne pepper. A Gewürztraminer will complement the cayenne pepper quality as Gewürztraminer has subtle pepper flavours and enough acidity to enhance this dish. Chardonnay works well for the reasons we discussed with Lobster Thermidor.
Lobster Bisque and Wine Pairing
Go for an oaked Chardonnay, Gewürztraminer Côte de Beaune for pairing with rich and powerful lobster Bisque.
Broiled Lobster, Grilled Lobster & Chablis Pairing
Chablis and Sancerre are my number one choices for Grilled Lobster. Chablis, as it is so simple, yet so crisp that it won’t overwhelm the lobster, nor undersell it. For a Sancerre, I just love the minerality this wine delivers, and how it will draw out that saline quality in fresh seafood. The smoky gunflint aromas of a Sancerre are perfect with the grilled lobster.
Can You Pair Red Wine with Lobster?
A general rule of thumb is no. However, you should always eat and drink what you like. If you are just absolutely sickened by the thought of letting a white wine touch your lips, try a Rosé. This dry wine is crisp, not too sweet and will match up nicely to any lobster dish.
Surf and Turf & Wine Pairings
If you’re stubborn and in the mood for red wine, think Surf & Turf and pair up lobster with some grilled steak wrapped in bacon. For this match, we’d suggest Pinot Noir, which is a light, fruity red with high acidity with an earthy quality to it that will be able to bite into the bacon-wrapped steak but be light enough to not destroy your lobstery goodness experience. Don’t expect wonders, however, as this is a middle of the road pairing, and while it won’t disappoint anyone, it’s not going to impress anyone either.
Pinot Noir will work okay with a Lobster BLT, but again we’d suggest a glass of Chardonnay with this one over any red.
If you want to maximize your surf and turf experience, have a glass of Chardonnay to sip with the lobster, and a glass of Cabernet Sauvignon nearby to conquer the grilled steak. You won’t be disappointed, even if you despise white wine.