Rich red wines such as Barolo, Cahors, Rioja, Aglianico and Cabernet Sauvignon pair best with Duck Confit.  Gusty rich wines are a must, as Duck Confit is full of flavour and may overwhelm delicate red wines.

Many wine enthusiasts insist that Burgundy or Pinot Noir is the best wine to pair with Duck Confit.  While this pairing can be amazing, you’ll have to ensure you have a bolder Pinot Noir, such as an Oregon Pinot Noir.  Otherwise, this expensive wine’s subtle nuances are lost in the richness of the Duck Confit.

Duck Confit is a method of preserving duck where the meat is cured and then slowly cooked in its own fat for hours. When eaten, this preservation style provides a flavourful contrast between the crispy duck skin and salty duck meat that melts in your mouth.  Packed full of fat and salt, Duck Confit is loaded with meatiness.

Best Red Wines with Duck Confit

TypeVarietalFoodRating
Red WineCahors AOCDuck Confit
Red WineAglianicoDuck Confit
Red WineTannatDuck Confit
Red WineCabernet SauvignonDuck Confit
Red WineRioja ReservaDuck Confit
Red WineSaint-Émilion AOCDuck Confit
White WineSpätlese RieslingDuck Confit
Red WineMadiran AOCDuck Confit
Red WinePommard - BurgundyDuck Confit
Red WineBaroloDuck Confit
Red WineVinsobresDuck Confit
Red WineChinon, Red (AOC)Duck Confit
Red WineBandol, Red AOCDuck Confit
Red WineMerlotDuck Confit
Red WineBurgundy, RedDuck Confit
Red WinePinot NoirDuck Confit
Red WineVacqueyras (AOC)Duck Confit
Red WineGigondasDuck Confit
Red WineMalbecDuck Confit
Red WineBordeauxDuck Confit

Cahors & Duck Confit Pairing


Cahors pairs well with Duck Confit as this red wine is full of bold blackberry flavours that offer refreshment against the salty and fatty flavours of Duck Confit, without wimping out.

Cahors is a Malbec-driven red with a touch of Merlot and Tanat grapes that features notes of blackberry, fruit leather, tobacco, earth, and hints of chocolate and licorice. Cahors is not as aggressive as a Cabernet Sauvignon, however, Cahors has plenty of tannin to stand up to Duck Confit, as well as complement the rich meaty flavours with its blackberry, earth and licorice notes.

Cahors is not an easy red wine to track down if you live in North America, and as such, if you want a similar experience, I’d suggest a Malbec from Argentina.

Aglianico & Duck Confit Pairing


Aglianico is a loud, full-bodied red wine from Italy that features rich flavours of black cherry, cassis, dark chocolate, earth, black pepper, smoke and burnt honey.  Aglianico is high in tannin and acidity, making it perfect with high-intensity foods like Duck Confit.

Aglianico requires at least ten years of aging before it can be cracked open, as it’s high in tannin.  The rich, fatty duck meat of Duck Confit absorbs any remaining astringency of Aglianico, ensuring it tastes smooth.  Furthermore, the tannin breaks down protein molecules, making the Duck Confit taste even more savoury and delicious.

Barolo & Duck Confit Pairing


Barolo is an expensive but legendary Italian red wine made from the Nebbiolo grape.  Nebbiolo has thin skin, giving Barolo a lighter red hue along with delicate violet and rose aromas.  Beware though!  The feminine look and smell of Barolo is a trap, as once you take a sip, you will be slapped with aggressive tannin, and fierce flavours of truffle, licorice, tar, tobacco and chocolate.

High in both tannin and acidity, Barolo matches the intense flavours of the Duck Confit while still providing a silky and luxurious texture to harmonize with the tender duck meat.

Cabernet Sauvignon & Duck Confit Pairing


Cabernet Sauvignon pairs well with Duck Confit as this bold red wine is loaded with tannin.  Tannin, when young, is astringent and inhospitable.  However, when you pit a young Cabernet Sauvignon up against a fatty and meaty piece of Duck Confit, the wine will soften and brightly show off its black currant flavours.

Cabernet Sauvignon also delivers amazing notes of chocolate, cedar, mint, herbs and tobacco, which mingle well with the savoury Duck Confit flavours.

Mature Cabernet Sauvignon will be even more amazing with Duck Confit, as the wine will be even more vibrant, rich and smooth.  Bear in mind mature Cabernet can come at a heavy expense, as you are often paying for the decades it takes for the wine to reach maturity.  Thus, for most of us, young Cabernet Sauvignon will pair up just fine.

Riesling & Duck Confit Pairing


Riesling is one of the few white wines that works with Duck Confit as it packs a lot of strong citrus, peach and pear flavours that keep your mouth refreshed against the heavy salt and fat content of Duck Confit.  High in acidity, Riesling whisks all the fatty flavours away in between sips, ensuring every bite of Duck Confit tastes as mesmerizing as your first bite.

Riesling can be dry, off-dry and sweet.  For Duck Confit, I prefer an off-dry Riesling, as i find the slight kiss of sugar refreshing against the heaviness of the cured Duck Meat.  I also find the saltiness of Duck Confit too intense for a bone-dry Riesling.

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