You can’t get any fancier than filet mignon. It is the creme de la creme of the beef world and the tenderest cut of beef. However, it is also one of the leanest cuts of beef with a delicate flavor.
The flavor can easily be overpowered by wine. So you need to serve filet mignon with the perfect wine.
Considerations for Pairing Filet Mignon and Red Wine
When pairing wine and filet mignon, there are many factors to consider. For example, how the filet mignon is seasoned could affect the wine pairing.
Filet mignon seasoned with salt and pepper should be paired with lighter-bodied red wines.
The cooking method could also affect the wine pairing. Grilled filet mignon works well with medium-full-bodied red wines. In contrast, light-bodied red wines are better for roasted filet mignon.
The sauce the filet mignon is served with could also impact the wine pairing. Rich, creamy sauces work better with full-bodied white wines. In contrast, lighter sauces like mushroom sauce work well with lighter-bodied red wines.
Personal preferences can also affect wine pairings. Some individuals like a glass of white wine with filet mignon. Others prefer a glass of red wine with filet mignon.
There is no right paring when it comes to personal preference. However, it may be wise to serve red and white wine with filet mignon to ensure everyone is happy.
What Wine Pairs With Filet Mignon?
Filet mignon has a delicate flavor. Therefore, you must be extremely careful when pairing wine with filet mignon.
Bordeaux is a blended French wine that can range from cheap to expensive. Five different grapes are used to make Bordeaux, but the primary grapes are always Cabernet Sauvignon or Merlot.
Bordeaux pairs perfectly with filet mignon. However, not all Bordeaux wine is compatible with filet mignon. For example, you could serve filet mignon with a budget-friendly Bordeaux. However, it will be a subpar pairing, not a spectacular pairing.
Do not serve filet mignon with cheap bottom-of-the-barrel Bordeaux wine. The robust astringent tannins will ruin the flavor of the delicate filet mignon.
It’s better to serve filet mignon with a high-quality Bordeaux wine. Yes, it’s more expensive, but this type of Bordeaux has been aged to soften the tannins.
Since filet mignon is lean and delicate, high-quality Bordeaux with soft tannins will complement the beef without destroying its flavor.
As I mentioned above, filet mignon has a delicate flavor. To increase its flavor profile, filet mignon is often served with rich, heavy sauces.
Malbec is a great paring for fillet mignon. It is a dry red wine that complements the rich sauce. The acidic nature of Malbec also cuts through the sauce’s richness and cleanses the palette.
Cabernet Sauvignon is a light red wine with a smooth viscosity.
It’s bursting with subtle notes of chocolate, minerals, plums, mint, and tobacco.
There are many different types of Cabernet sauvignon. Some styles of Cabernet sauvignon have robustly bold flavors, while others are light, fruity, and earthy.
Robust Cabernet Sauvignon wines do not pair well with fillet mignon. Remember, it has a mild flavor that strong wines can easily ruin.
It’s better to choose a light-bodied Cabernet Sauvignon with fruity or earthy tones. This style of Cabernet Sauvignon will not overpower the meat’s delicate flavor.
If you are not the biggest red wine lover, Chardonnay is a classic white wine perfect for filet mignon. Chardonnay is considered relatively neutral compared to other wines, so it can be served with any food.
Chardonnay has subtle notes of oak and fruit, and it is light-to-medium-bodied. The mild oak and fruit flavor of Chardonnay compliments the filet mignon without overpowering the delicate flavor of the mignon.
Merlot is a safer but delicious pairing for filet mignon. Merlot is medium-bodied with notes of cherry, vanilla, plums, and chocolate that pairs well with filet mignon.
The fruity contrast provides a refreshing touch, while the subtle chocolate and vanilla enhance the natural beefy flavor of the meat.
Pinot Noir is another classic pairing for filet mignon. Quality Pinot Noir is a bit pricey, but it has a mild, fruity, earthy flavor that pairs perfectly with filet mignon.
It also has notes of raspberry, cherry, and strawberry are the dominant flavors you will taste as you sip the wine.
However, its finish has subtle chocolate, vanilla, and truffle notes. All in all, pinot noir enhances the flavor of filet mignon, so it is an excellent pairing.
Sangiovese is a rich red wine with medium levels of tannins and high acidity. Sangiovese has two characteristic profiles.
Young Sangiovese has a mild spicy flavor with subtle hints of strawberry. In contrast, aged Sangiovese wine has dominant flavors of tart cherries and tea leaves.
Both types of Sangiovese pair well with fillet mignon served with a rich gravy. Young Sangiovese has a spicy flavor that amplifies the pepper or other spices used to season the filet mignon.
In contrast, the tart cherry and tea leaves flavors of aged Sangiovese wine add a nice kick to the mild filet mignon.
Rioja Reserva is a Spanish red wine with soft tannins that take the tender texture of the fillet mignon to the next level. Rioja Reserva has flavors of raspberry, cherry, blackberry, and plum. This flavor profile gives Rioja Reserva a refreshing taste.
When Rioja Reserva is matured, the fruity profile becomes less dominant, and vanilla, chocolate, earthy, and coconut flavors become more pronounced. This flavor profile provides sweet yet mildly fruity contrast when paired with savory filet mignon.
Filet mignon is one of the priciest cuts of beef. After all, it is the most tender piece of beef on the animal.
So, you do not want to waste your money by pairing filet mignon with the wrong wine. Luckily, you don’t have to worry about wine ruining the flavor of your filet mignon since you’ve got a list of the perfect wine pairings.