A Simple but Perfect Dish for Friendly Gatherings
Shrimp scampi is superb for a weeknight dinner. Yet, it is also fantastic to serve to friends on the weekend. This type of light dining is a great way of entertaining them. Overall, it is a simple dish made with just a handful of ingredients that complement each other perfectly.
But, to truly enjoy it, you must obtain fresh shrimps, preferably from a street market or farmer’s market. Frozen shrimps will not cut it. Now, to create the dish, sauté the shrimp until tender. Then, toss them in a garlic butter with white wine sauce, add a dash of lemon, and serve with hearty linguine or spaghetti pasta.
Origin of Shrimp Scampi
Shrimp scampi has a fascinating story behind it. Scampi is, in fact, a different type of crustacean from shrimp. The dish referred to as shrimp scampi used to be a course made exclusively with scampi in Italy. When it arrived in the United States, cooks began replacing the scampi with shrimp since it was easier to obtain. Nevertheless, the course kept both names!
What Wines Pair Well With Shrimp Scampi?
Shrimp scampi is a seafood dish, and as such, it goes well with bright and creamy white wines, such as Pinot Grigio, Chardonnay, Sauvignon Blanc, and Albariño. It is guaranteed to come alive when paired with zesty whites.
The challenge is to find wines that manage to complement shrimp scampi’s buttery richness and garlic pungency. For this reason, zippy white wines contrast the tenderness of the shrimp while cutting its fats with crisp acidity. That said, oily and creamy whites complement and enhance the food’s richness, too. Finally, for your shrimp scampi wine pairing, avoid wines heavy in oak, as the vanilla sweetness conflicts with the garlic.
Best White Wines With Shrimp Scampi
Venica & Venica Jesera Pinot Grigio
- Winery — Venica & Venica
- Country/Region — Italy, Friuli-Venezia Giulia, Collio
- Type — Italian Pinot Grigio
- Aroma — Caramel, Pineapple, Citrus Fruits, Apricot
- Grapes — Pinot Grigio
- Taste — Pineapple, Pear, Citrus, Apricot
- Alcohol Content — 13.5%
- Sugar — Dry
- Pairing — Shrimp Scampi, Scallop, Baby Greens, Branzino, Cheesy Pasta
This is a refreshing wine with a fragrant nose of white stone fruits and spring flowers. The palate is framed by dynamic hints of peaches, cherries, and pepper. Venica & Venica Jesera Pinot Grigio has a vibrant copper hue. In fact, this is the natural color obtained from the Pinot Grigio grape after slight, short skin maceration. Depending on the vintage, the tint changes from faded to intense. The bouquet is compelling and fragrant, demonstrating aromas of acacia, jasmine, and ginger, as well as notes of peaches, apricots, and citrus, enveloped in touches of wet stone and flint.
On the palate, the wine is savory, featuring peaches, cherries, and pink pepper tastes. The mouth flavors are replicas of the nose fragrances, as it exhibits a juicy and stimulating acidity. The texture is creamy and buttery, as with most Pinot Grigio. Furthermore, the aftertaste is fruity and long showcasing flavors of apple and pear. And the slight tannin, deriving from the citrus peel, contributes depth and crunchiness.
A Success Story
Venica & Venica began in Mernico, a tiny village from Dolegna del Collio province of Friuli-Venezia. After the Second World War, the people behind the winery decided to remodel their property into a farm where vines and fruit trees were grown side-by-side biologically.
In the beginning, the farm sustained the family’s needs, and the excess wine went to local restaurants. For years, they continued buying and working abandoned vineyards in an effort to find the perfect conditions for growing grapes. Today, the family continues their viticultural philosophy, maintaining the same respectful approach to the vines, the fruit, and the terroir.
Casas del Bosque Sauvignon Blanc Pequeñas Producciones
- Winery — Casas del Bosque
- Country/Region — Chile, Aconcagua, Casablanca Valley
- Type — Chilean Sauvignon Blanc
- Aroma — Apple, Pear, Bell Pepper, Asparagus, Mint
- Grapes — Sauvignon Blanc
- Taste — Grapefruit, Lemon Blossom, Tomato Leaf, Orange Peel, Passion Fruit
- Alcohol Content — 14%
- Sugar — Dry
- Pairing — Shrimp Scampi, Fried Chicken, Grilled Veggies, Oysters, Flaky Flounder, Halibut
Fragrant aromas of asparagus, mint, and bell pepper are the initial welcoming notes. They showcase Casas del Bosque Sauvignon Blanc’s herbaceous characteristics. In addition, the wine has low acidity with a pronounced flavor profile of vegetal, citrus, and orange peel flavors. Aromas of bell pepper, asparagus, mint, and thyme emerge, which blend with the delicate notes of pear and apples to create an intriguing bouquet. The result is a dynamic nose, quite irresistible, to be honest.
On the palate, the wine is round and dense. Flavors of citrus fruits, such as grapefruit and Meyer lemons are joined by those of tomato leaves, and orange peel. They combine with passion fruit hints to produce a pleasant bitterness. Thanks to the moderate acidity, all the flavors are balanced, and the finish is lengthy.
Fine Chilean Winemaking
Casas del Bosque is located in Casablanca Valley, where the climate is ideal for the production of a wide variety of grapes. The dominant force behind Casas del Bosque, however, is its winemaker, Meinard Jan Bloem. Originally from Holland, Meinard found a new homeland in Chile, where he studied viticulture. He continued his studies in France and Germany. Also, as part of his education, he worked under Weingut Dr. Bürklin-Wolf, producing high-end dry Rieslings. In 2016, he returned to Chile to work at Casas del Bosque. Since then, he has become one of Chile’s most renowned winemakers.
Weingut Max Ferd. Richter Mülheimer Sonnenlay Riesling
- Winery — Weingut Max Ferd. Richter
- Country/Region — Germany, Mosel
- Type — German Riesling
- Aroma — Grapefruit, Lime, Peach, Apricot, Mango, Pineapple
- Grapes — Riesling
- Taste — Nectarine, Passion Fruit, Honey, Cream, Wet Stone, Flint, Cinnamon Spice
- Alcohol Content — 9.5%
- Sugar — Semi-Sweet
- Pairing — Shrimp Scampi, Roast Pork, Seafood, Thai Food, Brie
With a pure, clean structure and a dense palate packed with citrus, orchard fruit, and mineral elements, Richter Mülheimer Sonnenlay Riesling seldom fails to impress. The wine starts off with a pale lemon-green appearance, which is quite attractive. A few swirls later, subtle but elegant aromas of citrus join syrupy scents of peaches, apricots, mangoes, and pineapples to complete the tropical bouquet.
On the palate, Richter Mülheimer Sonnenlay Riesling shows some sweetness, as tastes of honey, cream, and nectarine blend together, creating mouthwatering sensations. However, the racy acidity offsets sweetness, while mineral tones, namely wet stones, drive to the pleasant, gratifying finish.
Producing Quality Wine in Prestigious Mosel
Faithful to the notion that great wine comes from the vineyard, not the cellar, Richter is renowned for producing high-quality wines. However, to craft such wines, the people behind the winery need to overcome the challenge of cultivating vines on the slate slopes of Mosel. For this reason, they employ meticulous handwork, avoid large crop sizes, natural fertilizers, and employ sustainable farming practices.
Furthermore, harvesting is manual, by hand. As for the vilification, it begins with gentle pressing and continues with temperature-controlled fermentation in oak barrels. This deliberate process preserves the vineyard character of the grapes and develops wines that stand the test of time.
Mar de Frades Rías Baixas Albariño
- Winery — Mar de Frades
- Country/Region — Spain, Galicia, Rías Baixas
- Type — Spanish Albariño
- Aroma — Apple, Pear, Peach, Apricot, Grapefruit, Gooseberry, Grass
- Grapes — Albariño
- Taste — Pineapple, Lychee, Cream, Oil, Flint, Pepper, Eucalyptus, Honeysuckle, Almond
- Alcohol Content — 12.5%
- Sugar — Dry
- Pairing — Shrimp Scampi, Seafood, Octopus, Sea Scallops, Fish Tacos, Light Meats, Risotto
This Albariño from Mar de Frades is incredibly refreshing and crispy. Aromatic green fruits are underpinned by the balanced acidity, and the palate is loaded with vibrant notes of stone fruits, citruses, and herbs. Rías Baixas Albariño is made for shrimp scampi. On that note, if you are also looking for the perfect cooking wine for shrimp scampi, this is the one you need. In general, Albariño makes a great cooking wine, and Rías Baixas Albariño is no exception to the rule.
Fresh aromas of green apples, pears, peaches, and apricots define the bouquet, supported by hints of grapefruits, gooseberries, and grass. In the mouth, the freshness remains, with unripe peaches and apricots flavors, interlaced with notes of pineapples and lychees that combine to produce a complex and satisfying palate. As the wine hits the midpalate, the creamy, almost oily texture is tangible, while the lees aging offers rounded tastes. Delightful minerality and nuttiness define the long finish, while hints of white pepper, eucalyptus, and honeysuckle conclude the tasting profile.
Classic Spanish Wine Production
Mar de Frades represents the Spanish traditions of Val do Salnés: Albariño’s historic home. At Val do, Salnés is where Albariño wines began. It is also where some of Spain’s most sophisticated white wines come from. They are defined by pronounced aromas and characteristic freshness. On top of that, Mar de Frades designed a sailboat, paying homage to the pilgrims who used to disembark at Mar de Frades on their route to the Camino de Santiago. The winery is innovative, employing modern winemaking techniques, while the iconic blue bottle expresses the modernity of Atlantic wines.
Laurenz V. Singing Grüner Veltliner
- Winery — Laurenz V.
- Country/Region — Austria, Weinland, Niederösterreich
- Type — Austrian Grüner Veltliner
- Aroma — Apple, Pear, Papaya, Peach, Vanilla Spice
- Grapes — Grüner Veltliner
- Taste — Grapefruit, Kiwi, Gooseberry, Plum, Bramble, Cinnamon Stick, Brioche Bread
- Alcohol Content — 12%
- Sugar — Dry
- Pairing — Shrimp Scampi, Pork Tonkatsu, Snapper, Mussels, Camembert, Paneer
With an attractive and welcoming bouquet of stone fruit and citrus aromas and a pronounced spiciness on the palate, Laurenz V. Singing Grüner Veltliner is excellent, making it an ideal shrimp scampi wine match. Green fruit fragrances, such as apples and pears, define the nose and blend with notes of papaya and white peaches, producing a soft and smooth palate. In the mouth, the characteristic Grüner Veltliner character surfaces, as spicy touches of cinnamon and vanilla are interweaved with bright tastes of kiwi, grapefruit, gooseberry, plum, and bramble fruit. The tropical edge is present, too, producing a long and satisfying finish. Ultimately, a yeasty zestiness adds delicious brioche bread flavors and creamy touches to round off the taste.
Five Generations of Winemaking Tradition
Laurenz V. focuses on producing single-varietal Grüner Veltliner wines, the prestigious grape variety of Austria. Founded by the Lenz Moser family, Laurenz V. is the most recent offering from the family’s five generations of winemaking tradition. The grapes are sourced from the Kremstal and Kamptal areas of Southern Austria. There, the Danube Valley warms the vines, increasing their sugar concentration, while the cool air of the Waldviertel region refreshes them at night. As such, the diurnal range helps the grapes attain phenomenal acidity, resulting in bright yet complex Grüner Veltliner wines.
These are my suggestions of the best white wine with shrimp scampi. So, next time you plan on cooking this delicious seafood dish, be sure to uncork one of them. Just invite your friends for a fun, laid-back evening, prepare your shrimp and enjoy it with chilled Albariño, Sauvignon Blanc, Riesling, or Grüner Veltliner. C’est Magnifique!