By Cathy Huyghe
Certain wines are reliable stand-bys when it comes to pairing with Asian food, and Chef Tsai’s recommendation for this dish — 2003 Hopler Gewürztraminer — is no exception. If your local wine shop doesn’t have that specific wine, however, know that the characteristics of Gewürztraminer that make it so appealing with Asian food also present themselves in other grapes such as Riesling, Pinot Gris and Muscat. A personal all-time favorite is Trimbach Muscat ($15-$20, depending on the vintage) because it’s exceptionally aromatic on the nose, clean and almost limpid on the palate, but finishes bone dry. That’s quite a lot to get out of one glass (or even one sip) of wine! But the complexity matches nicely with the spice and the layers of flavors in today’s dish.