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For this kind of food, a sparkling wine is one of your best options.

"You could just plunk down for sparkling wine, and serve it with all your spicy foods and it would work, although it would work with some foods better than others," explains Wesson. The carbonation has a cooling effect in your mouth. Sparkling wines are also more acidic, which tends to cut the oil, and they have a strong fruity flavour because they are usually made with ripe grapes.

Sparkling wines are usually more expensive than other varieties because of the care and extra production involved in producing them.

"It just costs more because essentially you have to make it twice. You make your wine, then you add yeast and sugar which produces carbon dioxide and alcohol," says Wesson. "It’s a lot more work."

The first dish matched a California roll with a Red Rooster Sprakling Wine from the Okanagan Valley. It was a mixed vintage, using wine from two different growing seasons, most likely 1999 and 2000. It also has a moderate alcohol content at 12.5 per cent, but doesn’t burn at all. It sells for about $22 per bottle in B.C.

Pairing with Samosa

The Samosa looked like an egg roll, but Wesson says he was pressed for time. The important thing to keep in mind is that it’s a deep fried pocket filled with vegetables and eastern spices. The oil and the salt are fairly dominant.

The wine he chose was a Casal Garcia Vinho Verde from Portugal, a steal at around $12.

"This is one of my favourites because it goes with absolutely everything," says Wesson. It’s slightly carbonated, and light with no trace of oak or tannin. There is a pleasant green apple taste, and it’s light in alcohol at 9 per cent.

"If you were a surgeon you could drink a bottle of this at lunch and not worry about your procedure that afternoon," he jokes.

The Vinho Verde goes with salty foods, oily and deep-fried foods, and anything spicy because it’s subtle and refreshing. In fact, food actually brings out the flavours in the wine in a pleasant contrast.

Pairing with Shrimp Satay

Thai food is notoriously spicy, to the point where many people can’t eat it. But those who can eat it generally love it.

For the Satay Shrimp, Wesson selected a Gray Monk 2000 Pinot Blanc, also from the Okanagan Valley.

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