It’s the day we’ve all been waiting for – it’s Pancake Day!

Do what will you be cooking for your Shrove Tuesday feast?

Traditional crepes? Vegan pancakes? Fluffy Japanese ones? An Insta-ready rainbow recipe?

Or maybe you’ll even get your pets involved with some cat-friendly pancakes?

Whatever you’re making, you’re going to want something to wash down all that sugary goodness with.

And we’ve got the answer: wine pairings.

Oh yes, pancakes taste even better with a glass of vino, and we’ve got the perfect pairings to go with any topping.

From salted caramel and sherry to bananas and moscato, here are our wine recommendations for Pancake Day:


Nutella: Classics No.41 Finest Reserve Port NV, Portugal

Port isn’t just for Christmas, it’s for pairing year-round with anything sweet enough to keep your dentist’s children in private school.

You could go down the tawny port route for added nuttiness, but I’ve gone with ruby port for its youthful fruitiness, produced by Taylor’s in conjunction with M&S in-house winemaker, Sue Daniels.

Nutella demands something equally rich and toothsome – and that is nicely nailed by ruby port, with its chocolate-covered cherries and almondy calling card.

Buy for £11 from M&S.

Salted Caramel: Pedro Ximénez Triana Hidalgo Sherry, Spain

Not a classic pancake topping, but I like it, so it’s staying in. OK, but how do we pair a wine to something so tooth-looseningly sweet?

When in doubt, introduce it to something sweeter. Case in point with this treacle-like sherry, which could moonlight as a pancake topping all by itself.

It’s made from Pedro Ximénez grapes dried on straw mats – a process that triggers flavours of dried figs, hazelnuts, molasses and salted caramel.

Buy for £14.25 from The Whisky Exchange.

Maple Syrup: Chateau La Rame, St-Croix-du-Mont 37.5cl, France

Certain dessert wines contain a compound also found in the herb fenugreek, which delivers flavours of maple syrup.

This is one of those wines, made from grapes that have been attacked by a moisture-sucking fungus, concentrating the sugar levels.

Basically, it’s a Sauternes on a budget, made in St-Croix-du-Mont, just over the river Garonne in Bordeaux. Same grapes and style, heavier wallet when you leave the shop.

Buy for £14.99 (£12.99 mix 6) from Majestic.


Mushroom: Les Nivières Cabernet Franc Saumur

Fungus and farm flavours usually call for Pinot Noir’s juicy mannerisms, and by farm I mean dairy.

Not on my watch, instead we’re heading to the banks of the Loire for the smoky, earthy inflections of a Saumur Cabernet Franc.

Light in body with fresh, fragrant, fruity and semi-spicy red berry flavours, this is ideal to chuck in the fridge for half an hour before sipping.

Anything from porcinis to portobellos will be in very accomplished hands.

Buy for £7.99 (£2.50 off until March 15) from Waitrose Cellar.

Bacon and Brie: Specially Selected Alsace Pinot Gris

There’s something about bacon sizzling in a pan that makes us zombie-walk to the kitchen of a morning.

In fact, I would have a fry-up in a pancake if I could – though this is the more elevated version.

Match the sweet bonfire notes in cured bacon with an Alsace Pinot Gris and you’ll be laughing, with a similarly unctuous texture and its own smoky note for good measure.

In fact, ditch Pinot Grigio altogether for Aldi’s peachier, spicier version.

Buy for £7.99 from Aldi.

Ham & Cheese: Queen Bee Viognier

I probably should have saved this wine for my upcoming Mother’s Day column, but I didn’t – and here’s why.

Whether you are planning to serve up chunky ham with salty gruyère, or mature cheddar with that cooked wafer-thin stuff, Viognier has a richness that swipes right on anything creamy.

Produced by über-sustainable South African winery, Journey’s End, this Western Cape Viognier with a dab of Chardonnay is basically peaches and cream in a glass with a twist of white pepper.

Buy for £12.99 (£9.99 mix 12) from Laithwaites.


Lemon & Sugar: Nyetimber Cuvée Cherie, England

Simple, sweet, tart… but that’s enough about me, let’s focus on the flavours in this classic crêpe.

It is worth knowing that sugary foodstuffs can hide the fruit in a dry wine, putting its astringency on blast instead.

No one wants that, especially when there’s a pillowy, off-dry Chardonnay-based froth that tastes of lemon drizzle cake on offer.

It’s spendy all right, but then it is a rarity from one of the very finest wine producers in the country…

Buy for £39.99 (£34.99 mix 6) from Majestic.

Blueberry: Domaine du Météore Le Cratère Sparkling Rosé, France

Anything that gets a shout-out in a Tarantino movie is automatically elevated to icon status. Fact.

We’re talking Pulp Fiction, which references blueberry pancakes – though had Quentin known about Domaine du Météore, he absolutely would have mentioned it as a smoking-hot wine match.

Made in the same way as champagne, this fresh, herbal, sparkling rosé is fashioned from Syrah grapes grown in a 200m-wide meteorite crater in the Languedoc region of Southern France.

Buy for £28 from Domaine du Météore.

Strawberries & Cream: Exton Park Rosé 23 Half Bottle, England

Strawberries contain lactone compounds, giving them a creamy profile all of their own.

Same for peaches, which is why they both pair so blooming well with cream, whipped or otherwise.

A Pinot Noir-dominated pink fizz like this is a smart pairing pal, bringing English summer flavours of Eton Mess and punnets of plump strawberries.

Hampshire’s Exton Park has blended this pocket rocket using 23 base wines from its extensive, 11-year-old wine library.

Buy for £23.95 from The Little Fine Wine Company.

Banana: Araldica Moscato D’Asti, Italy

Moscato is the only grape you can describe as tasting ‘grapey’ without being arrested by the plonk police. I learned that the hard way.

Sister wine to Asti Spumante, Moscato D’Asti is super-low in alcohol, lightly sparkling and floral as a daisy – well, honeysuckle – while Spumante has a full-throttle froth.

A delectable hinterland between sweet and fresh, this Moscato meshes effortlessly with the naturally sweet flavours of honey and caramel housed inside a banana.

Buy for £7.99 (£5.99 mix 6) from Majestic.

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