New York Strip Steak pairs best with tannic red wines such as Cabernet Sauvignon, Bordeaux, Malbec, Shiraz and Merlot. Rarer NY Strip Steaks can handle younger wines as less fat will be cooked off, meaning there’s more flavour for the tannin to hook up with. NY Strip Steaks that are cooked medium to well, pair better with aged wines as the flavour won’t overpower the subtle nuances of the wine.
While NY Strip steak is cut from the beef short loin, it isn’t the most tenderest of steaks (that would be Filet Mignon), nor is it the most flavourful (that would be a Rib Eye Steak). Instead, NY Strip Steak falls right in the sweet spot where you get the best of both worlds in that you have a tender and flavourful steak. With its rich marbling and beefy flavours, NY Strip Steak requires bold reds with plenty of tannin.
NY Strip Steak also goes by a variety of other names, such as Kansas City Strip Steak, Sirloin Steak, Hotel Steak, Ambassador Steak, Strip Loin Steak and Contré Filet.
California Cabernet Sauvignon & NY Strip Steak Pairing
Cabernet Sauvignon is loaded with grippy tannin that cuts through the fatty marbling of a delicious NY Strip Steak. The tannin also breaks down the steak’s proteins, which makes the steak taste even more delicious. As the tannin of the wine merges with the steak, the wine also becomes smoother, and the complex notes of coffee, cedar, cinnamon, earth, eucalyptus, herbs, leather, minerals, pencil shavings and tobacco smoke are unleashed upon your tongue. These complex notes do not dominate but rather tease and flirt with your tongue, making for a memorable dining experience.
With Cabernet Sauvignon, you’ll also find rich plum, cherry, and raspberry that will come across as refreshing. Meanwhile, the vanilla and dark chocolate notes of the wine mesh beautifully with the char marks on your NY Strip Steak.
For rare steaks, select a younger Cabernet Sauvignon, as this steak will be loaded with fat and flavour that might dominate a perfectly aged Cabernet Sauvignon in its prime. For NY Strip Steaks cooked medium and up, now is a good time to pull out that Cabernet Sauvignon you’ve been sitting on for years or decades.
Cabernet Sauvignon from any country will pair up nicely with NY Strip Steak, but for the crème de la crème, California is what I’ll reach for. Beringer, Dry Creek, Flora Springs, Harlan Estate, Hidden Ridge, Robert Mondavi, Shafer, Silver Oak, Stags’ Leap, Sterling and Dominus are among my favourite wineries when it comes to enjoying wine with Steak.
Bordeaux & New York Strip Steak Pairing
Bordeaux is a wine that can be aged for decades, and NY Strip Steak cooked to perfection is the perfect time to pull out of the cellar to enjoy with this magnificent steak. Of course, not everyone has the patience, time or money to be ageing wine, and you’ll find plenty of Bordeaux bottles to choose from wherever you buy wine. If your Bordeaux is young, stick to medium-rare steaks, as the steak’s high-fat content and flavour will smooth out the rough edges of the wine.
Bordeaux is a classic French wine that is a blend of Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Petit Verdot, Malbec and Cabernet Franc. Not all of these grapes need to be included. Also, Bordeaux, depending on where it was grown, will either be Cabernet Sauvignon dominant or Merlot dominant. Both grapes are known for their heavy tannin, which makes Bordeaux delicious with a fatty steak like NY Strip Steak.
When tannin, fat and protein collide, the tannin is smoothed out, allowing the Bordeaux’s complex flavours of cedar, coffee, earth, herbs, leather, licorice, pencil shavings, truffles and violets to shine. Meanwhile, the velvety notes of plum, cassis, cherries and blackberries provide ample refreshment against your beefy steak. Finally, the tannin also denatures the protein molecules, which makes the steak even taste more flavourful and tender.
While the perfect Bordeaux will be a five-star experience, I am only giving this pairing four out of five stars as for us regular folks with low incomes, the perfect Bordeaux may only roll around once in our lifetime. However, once you are familiar with the world of Bordeaux, you’ll be able to pick out a delicious wine each time you have steak.
Merlot & Grilled New York Strip Steak Pairing
Merlot, on its own, will often be velvety, plush and medium-bodied with notes of dark cherry dipped in dark chocolate. Of course, Merlot has many styles which are dependent on the winemaker, and where it was grown, however, medium-bodied tends to be the crowd-favourite, and thus it’s what you’ll often find.
Soft, velvety and juicy, Merlot matches the rich and tender weight of your NY Strip Steak. The dark chocolate flavours of the wine teases out the charred flavours of your grilled steak, while the cherry and plum notes give you plenty of refreshment in between bites.
Hidden between the layers, you’ll also find notes of cedar, herbs, licorice, nuts, tar and tobacco which are delicious and enticing when matched with the juicy flavours of your steak.
I love Merlot from around the world, but when I sit down to a NY Strip Steak, I don’t like to fool around, so I often stick to California for my Merlot. Notable producers of Merlot from this region include Duckhorn, Cakebread Cellars, Blackstone, Beringer, Stags’ Leap, Sterling, Wente, Shafer, Matanzas Creek and Silverado.
Australian Shiraz & NY Strip Steak Pairing
An Australian Shiraz is going to be a juicy red with jammy notes of raspberries, blueberry, blackberry and cassis. Smooth and bold, Australian Shiraz doesn’t require much in terms of ageing and will be ready to drink with your NY Strip Steak no matter how you cook it. With Shiraz, you’ll also find notes of black pepper, dark chocolate and spice that complement the savoury and grilled flavours of your steak.
I often recommend Australian Shiraz with steak as it’s a crowd-pleaser due to its fruit-forward nature. Australia has been making Shiraz consistently well for decades now, and it’s easy to always find a bottle that will suit your budget. Syrah, which is the same grape as Shiraz, has a very different feel to it. With French Syrah, there is less focus on the refreshing fruit flavours, and the wine will come across as more earthy, smoky, funky and herbal. Syrah is more complementary to the meaty steak flavours of a New York Strip Steak, however, most people, especially those living in the New World, prefer the jammy flavours of an Australian Shiraz.
Argentinian Malbec & New York Strip Steak Pairing
Argentina Malbec is rich with flavours of black cherries and plum, making it incredibly refreshing when paired up with a meaty and savoury steak. You’ll also find a short but delightful smoky finish which makes Malbec exceptional with a grilled NY Strip Steak. Argentinian Malbec has softer tannin when coming out of the bottle, so this isn’t a wine you’ll need to age for years to appreciate. However, I wouldn’t pair Malbec with a rare NY Strip Steak, as the steak will be much too flavourful and will overwhelm the wine. Instead, pair Argentinian Malbec with NY Strip Steaks that are grilled medium to medium-well.
The more oak used to age your Malbec, the higher the price will be. With oakier Argentina Malbec, you’ll find lots of vanilla and chocolaty flavours that make it a dream with the charred flesh of a NY Strip Steak. However, budget-friendly Malbec will also be delicious with this steak.