10 Best Wines With Fondue
Late autumn or early winter are both perfect times to start considering what fondue you’ll make for the coming months. Making fondue is an activity that fills the short, dark days and keeps you warm, and of course, fondue is the perfect centerpiece for any party. Wine is often the drink of choice to pair with a good fondue. Which wine you choose will depend on what sort of fondue you’re making as well as how you’re making it. Of course, the quality of the fondue cheese you select will also determine the success of your pairing. We’ll list some of the best wines with fondue, based on their versatility, on how well they can enhance the flavor of the fondue.
10. 2014 Naked Winery Tease Oregon Riesling
This is a great fondue wine for before or after the winter holidays. This bottle features hints of ripened pear and a dash of candy cane flavor, giving it a very crisp and refreshing taste. Pineapple rounds out the mixture of flavors and lingers on the tongue for a nice, clean finish. Light and fruity wines such as this Riesling go well with contrasting rich and creamy fondues, such as those made from a nice Gruyere cheese. The creamy textures of this sort of fondue provide a rich and decadent flavor that will keep you warm on any winter night.
9. La Marca Prosecco
Prosecco is one type of sparkling wine, a category of wines that go particularly well with some fondue types. This particular vintage features a flavor that is of course very fresh, with hints of lemon, green apples and ripened citrus. This wine’s unique flavors are rounded out thanks to a medley of grapefruit. The texture is very earthy and toasty, despite Prosecco being a typically bubbly wine.
We recommend this wine if your goal is to make a particularly oily fondue. The fresh, bubbly nature of the wine is sure to offset much of the greasy textures in the fondue, thus providing a nice balance.
8. 2016 Dry Creek Vineyard Dry Chenin Blanc
A surprisingly fruity dry wine, this Chenin Blanc goes especially well with authentic Grueyere cheese fondue. It has a very subtle sweetness about, perfect for balancing the strong flavor of the fondue. It’s also very easy to drink, with its smooth, creamy texture. The Dry Creek Chenin Blanc pairs well with salty cheeses. Chenin Blanc is also a very light wine, which makes it ideal for heavier fondues.
7. 2015 Naked Winery Oregon Dominatrix Pinot Noir
This Pinot Noir starts out with some very earthy textures that eventually give way to some intense berry flavors. The primary flavors here are raspberry and cranberries, which work together to create a fruity taste. While the flavors can come on a bit strong, they are not overpowering. Rather, they remain delicate on the taste buds and linger pleasantly after the last sip, with aromas to match. Although red wines are not paired with fondue as frequently as whites, the more delicate textures of a lighter Pinot Noir such as this one will go quite nicely with any creamy cheese fondue.
6. Sweet North Carolina Muscadine
This wine stands out as being a popular pick for a sweet wine that is not overpowering. Most tasters enjoy the fact that it is wine while being low enough in alcohol content that the fruity notes are readily apparent. This wine is a good choice for those who want something alcoholic with their fondue but don’t necessarily enjoy the taste of strong alcohol. If you prefer a wine with sweet, fruity notes where the alcohol content is taking a backseat to the almost juice-like qualities of sweet wine, we heartily recommend this bottle.
5. 2016 Black Oak California Chardonnay
The smooth and rich textures of this white wine will perhaps make you think you’re drinking a medium-bodied red instead. However, it’s a white wine that complements the relative heavy nature of a good cheese fondue, and it does this very well. There are various notes and aromas to savor in this wine, most notably that of peaches or hints of fresh green apples just at the edges. The slight presence of a tropical fruit flavor mixed with the essence of toasted vanilla help to round out the plethora of flavors that blend together in this white wine.
4. 2016 CMS White Columbia Valley Sauvignon Blanc
Notes of green apple are the primary flavor focus of this wine. They provide a fresh yet tart taste though not one that totally overwhelms the palate. Rather, the tartness here helps to balance the rich, creamy nature of many fondues. Most Sauvignon Blanc wines tend to have a rather herbal quality, making them ideal for blending flawlessly with the textures of a good cheese fondue. This wine is no exception, and will provide a great drinking companion that doesn’t overpower the fondue.
3. Quady Vya Sweet Vermouth Blend
This sweet Vermouth features some wide and varied aromas such as herbal roots, cherries, and cinnamon. Its medium body and delicious, fruity notes are a particular hit with most tasters. As Vermouth, and particularly very sweet Vermouth such as this one, is considered a dessert drink, it pairs best with a dessert fondue. Rather than cheese fondue, we recommend a chocolate fondue to go with this Vermouth, making for a truly decadent dessert experience.
2. 2015 Dark Horse California Merlot
Blackberries are the primary flavor and aroma components of this deep red Merlot. It’s an excellent budget Merlot to pair with your next dish of fondue. This wine’s flavors and textures are rounded out thanks to subtle hints of nutmeg and a touch of oak. Some consumers note that this Merlot tends to be somewhat more bitter than some of its competitors, which could be what some red wine enthusiasts here would enjoy. Because this is a medium-bodied red wine, we recommend pairing it with a fondue that has elements of beef mixed into the sauce.
1. Quentin’s Reserve Pinot Grigio
The delicate aromas of orange blossoms and various floral arrangements will float to your senses as soon as you open this wine. These aromas add character to the wine but it really shines when you take that first sip. Fruity notes of melons, pears, and apples all mix together in a delightful way that seems to give each component space on the palate without trying to overpower one another.
The perfect blend of tastes and textures in this wine makes it one of the best wines to go with any fondue dish that uses fish as the main ingredient.
As you can see, while lighter, fruitier wines are often the best choice for fondue, such is not always the case. Fuller or redder wines are a better option if you fondue has some meat included. If you favor fondue purely as a dessert dish or are going for chocolate fondue rather than cheese, pair it with a similarly sweet dessert wine for the best results. Whatever the case, our list of ten best wines with fondue has something to match any fondue type you could want.