There’s nothing quite like a juicy, tender filet mignon. This cut of beef is perfect for a romantic dinner at home or a special event. But what wines should you serve with it? In this blog post, we will explore some of the best pairings for wines with filet mignon. We’ll discuss red and white wines, as well as some of our favorite brands and styles. So whether you’re looking for a wine to serve at your next dinner party or just want to expand your wine knowledge, read on!
Filet Mignon is a delicate, yet robust and beefy flavor profile. It’s best complemented by red wines with gentle tannins such as mature Cabernet Sauvignon, Bordeaux, Merlot, Pinot Noir, and Rioja Reserva.
Because Filet Mignon is a delicate yet hearty meat that is more concerned with texture than taste, powerful red wines are not appropriate. Look for reds that are less fruity in character and offer earthy tastes such as mushroom, cigar box, pencil lead, tobacco, or leather when searching for these wines.
Filet Mignon comes from the thin end of the tenderloin, whereas Chateaubriand steaks come from the middle and wider side. Filet Mignon is ideal for one person, while Chateaubriand is comparable in size to a small roast with two or more servings.
Best Wine with Filet Mignon
When it comes to white wines, there are a few different styles that pair well with filet mignon. Rich white wines like oaked Chardonnay and buttery Californian style Chardonnay offer a creamy texture that complements the richness of the beef. For a lighter option, try an unoaked Chardonnay or a Blanc de Noirs Champagne. If you’re looking for something truly unique, try pairing your filet mignon with an aged Sauternes or a dessert wine like an Icewine.
Bordeaux & Filet Mignon Pairing
Bordeaux is a difficult wine to understand if you are new to the world of wine. Bordeaux is a blended red wine from France that comes in at a wide range of pricing levels. Some Bordeaux may cost hundreds of dollars, while others may be as little as twenty dollars. If you’re eating Filet Mignon, though, there’s a perfect Bordeau for you, and if you’re splurging, why not go with something over $50?
Bordeaux, like other red wine varieties, is designed to be food-friendly, since it is a mix of five grapes and the most prevalent grape will usually be Cabernet Sauvignon or Merlot. The most expensive bottles contain the finest grapes that were picked in that year, and the price drops with each quality level. You may get a Bordeaux on a budget of $20-$40 that goes well with Filet Mignon and still have an excellent pairing; however, it would not be extraordinary.
Whether you’re looking for a great Bordeaux to sip on, or one to enjoy with Filet Mignon, the higher the price, the better. The finest Bordeaux is more expensive because it has been aged so that tannins are soft, and this adds to its cost. You’ll either have to cellar the bottle for a decade or acquire it from a restaurant, wine store, or collector who has already aged it for you. You may also locate bottles of Bordeaux that are ready to drink; however, before doing so, consult an expert to see whether the bottle is fit for consumption with Filet Mignon.
A softer tannin Bordeaux is a must since young Bordeaux with harsh tannin will destroy the rich and delicate flavors of Filet Mignon. Because Filet Mignon does not have as much fat as Ribeye or NY Strip Steak, it won’t have a lot of flavor. When fully ripe, Bordeaux has a smooth texture that complements the mouthfeel of Filet Mignon nicely. Fruity notes of cassis, plum, and black cherry will be present but muted, allowing the complex layers of mocha, vanilla, smoke, and earthiness to add character to the pairing.
Cabernet Sauvignon & Filet Mignon Pairing
A mature Cabernet Sauvignon has a lush and smooth texture that complements the decadent mouthfeel of Filet Mignon. Cacao, chocolate, plum, smoke, tobacco, mint, and leather further complement and contrast the delicate Filet Mignon notes. There are several varieties of Cabernet Sauvignon to choose from; if you’re unfamiliar with the wine, do some research or get advice from where you bought the bottle. Some Cabernet Sauvignon is strong and powerful while others are refined and balanced with earthy tones.
Cabernet Sauvignon is too strong for a delicate flavor steak like Filet Mignon, so stay away from it. Because Filet Mignon is so lean, it needs to be cooked rare to medium-rare in order to preserve its taste. Therefore, you don’t want a powerful red wine to take all of the subtle flavors away.
Merlot & Filet Mignon Pairing
In North America, Merlot is a less risky match than Cabernet Sauvignon because it is typically softer (although there are many exceptions). Merlot has smooth chocolate, vanilla, plum, and cherry tastes that compliment Filet Mignon. Between bites, the contrasting fruit notes keep your palate entertained while the velvety chocolate and vanilla notes complement the subtle beef flavors.
Pinot Noir & Filet Mignon Pairing
Filet Mignon goes with Pinot Noir, as I generally know what I’m getting into with this red wine. Good Pinot Noirs are usually expensive, but they’re also light, fruity, earthy, and captivating. Welcoming flavors of cherry, strawberry, and raspberry gently wash over your senses before truffle, vanilla, chocolate, and smoke scents mingle into the mix.
Rioja Reserva & Filet Mignon Pairing
The buttery texture of your Filet Mignon goes well with the softened tannins in Rioja Reserva or Gran Reserva, which is Spanish red wine. Rioja has aromas of blackberry, cherry, plum, and raspberry that are both refreshing and delicious. When fully matured, the fruitiness subsides somewhat but still remains present, allowing for complex nuances of chocolate, coconut, vanilla, leather, and earth to come through. Rioja Reserva is an elegant and smooth red wine similar to Pinot Noir. Treat yourself to a glass of Rioja Gran Reserva if you want to go all out.
The main distinction between Rioja Reserva and Gran Reserva is that Gran Reserva Rioja isn’t produced every year, as it only emerges during spectacular growing seasons. As a result, Gran Reserva is more costly because of its scarcity and length in a barrel. I am certain you will never forget this wine pairing.