Pork tenderloin can be prepared a few different ways, so we wanted to give you some great wine pairings no matter your preferred cooking method.
We went across the board with the wine pairings for this one, and included a full-bodied white wine, a light (and sometimes medium body) red wine, and a full-bodied red to round out the list. Different wines appeal to different tastes, so we wanted to give you plenty of options.
For this pork tenderloin, we’re assuming it’s pretty basic: some olive oil, salt, black pepper, light seasonings, and maybe a splash of marinade. We’re assuming the pork tenderloin recipe is cooked medium, with an internal temperature of 145 F, and has mild flavors with just a little fat.
The following wine pairings have general information about the wine, why it pairs well with pork tenderloin, and a few bottle recommendations for both under $20 and over $20. Cheers!
‣ Pinot Noir
Chardonnay (full-bodied White Wine)
Country(ies): United States, France, Australia
Region(s): Napa Valley (California), Sonoma County (California), Burgundy (France)
Tastes: Butter, Lemon, Butterscotch, Apple, Vanilla, White Peach, Honeysuckle
Specific Notes: Oaked Chardonnay is a great match for pork tenderloin because of its lovely creaminess from spending time in oak barrels during aging. The saltiness in the pork tenderloin is offset with the acid in the wine. The body of the wine can certainly stand up to any spices added to the tenderloin, and is also fantastic when paired with leaner cuts like pork loin.
Chardonnay is also a good pairing for white meat cuts such as pork chops, roast chicken, roasted turkey, and one of our favorite pairings ever: fried chicken.
Try These Bottles:
- Matchbook, Dunnigan Hills, CA (under $20)
- tasting notes: balanced, pineapple, mango, melon, butterscotch, vanilla
- Knuttel Family, Russian River Valley, CA (under $20)
- tasting notes: lemon custard, tropical fruits, orange blossom, nutmeg, ripe lemons
- Bouzereau, Bourgogne Blanc Cote d’Or, France (over $20)
- tasting notes: dry fruits, white flowers
- Plumpjack ‘Napa’, Napa Valley, CA (over $20)
- tasting notes: apple, baked pear, lemon curd, white peach, apricot
Pinot Noir (light-bodied Red Wine)
Grape(s): Pinot Noir
Country(ies): United States, France
Region(s): Willamette Valley (Oregon), Rogue Valley (Oregon), Sonoma County (California), Santa Barbara (California), Burgundy (France)
Tastes: Cherry, Raspberry, Clove, Mushroom, Vanilla
Specific Notes: A wine that can truly encompass so many food pairings, Pinot Noir is specifically a great choice as a pork wine pairing. The combination of lower tannin and a high level of acidity is a perfect pairing for white meats. The earthy notes of the pork are a perfect pairing for Pinot Noir.
Pinot Noir in general is very food friendly, and is specifically great with salmon, duck, mushroom risottos, or pasta dishes with a mushroom sauce.
Try These Bottles:
- Grande Courtade “L’Instante Rare”, Southern France (under $20)
- tasting notes: black cherry, pepper
- Violet Hill, Rouge Valley, OR (under $20)
- tasting notes: dark cherry, mocha, floral
- Rene LeClerc, Gevery Chambertin, Burgundy, France(over $20)
- tasting notes: blackberries, black fruits
- Shea Wine Cellars,‘Estate’, Willamette Valley, OR(over $20)
- tasting notes: cherry, pomegranate, fresh earth, dusky spices
Zinfandel (full-bodied Red Wine)
Grape(s): Zinfandel, Primitivo (Italy)
Country(ies): United States, Italy
Region(s): California (United States), Puglia (Italy)
Tastes: Blackberry, Strawberry, Peach Preserves, Cinnamon, Sweet Tobacco
Specific Notes: Zinfandel is a bold, yet fruit forward wine with smoky notes and leather spices that can reflect beautifully with pork dishes.
Zinfandel’s higher alcohol pairs nicely with the richness in the pork tenderloin, and the smokiness in the wine can also be a great accompaniment. We highly recommend this wine alongside a slow cooked pork shoulder (or pork butt), especially if its accompanied by barbecue sauce!
Try These Bottles:
- 12 E Mezzo Primitivo, Puglia, Italy (under $20)
- tasting notes: mature plums, tobacco leaves, cocoa
- Hess Artezin, Mendecino, CA (under $20)
- tasting notes: raspberry, cherry, baking spice, cinnamon
- Green & Red ‘Chiles Canyon’, Napa Valley, CA(over $20)
- tasting notes: pomegranate, Morello cherry, bergamot, dried roses
- Neal Family ‘Rutherford Dust’, Napa Valley, CA (over $20)
- tasting notes: blueberry, strawberry, vanilla, Brazil nut
- Chenin Blanc
- Pinot Gris
- Côtes du Rhône
- off-dry Riesling
Tips for Serving Wine
When dealing with red wine, it is always best to serve these bottles slightly under room temperature, or anywhere from 55 – 68 degrees Farenheit (or about 13 to 20 degrees Celsius). Lighter reds, such as some Pinot Noirs, are fantastic when served closer to the 55 degree range.
As always, the best wine pairing is the one that you like the most! All of us have different preferences and tastes, so please experiment with a few different bottles and come to your own conclusions!