Best Chicken BBQ Wine Pairing Options

BBQ chicken has a unique taste, it is tender and delicate in its texture, but has a smokiness to it and a sweetness that will make your taste bud tingle.

Most of us tend not to think of pairing wine with BBQ chicken, but you would be surprised to find out just how delicious this can be. 

Best Chicken BBQ Wine Pairing Options

The right wine can pair with BBQ chicken perfectly. But, which wine should you choose? Let us help you. 

Best Wines To Pair With BBQ Chicken 

Let us, first, consider the taste of BBQ chicken and what wine would need to pair well with it. 

BBQ chicken is sweet, it has spices, smokiness, and a caramelized skin. However, each BBQ chicken recipe can be different, so the choice of wine will depend on the sauce and the marinade that the chicken has been cooked with. 

Typically, your traditional BBQ chicken pairs well with a light red wine, or a full-bodied white. The herbs in BBQ chicken can also pair well with fruity, young red wines such as a Grenache and a Beaujolais. 

Do not forget that simple BBQ chicken can also pair with a Chardonnay or Pinot Noir, but it must be simple, with few flavor complexities.

Then there is savory BBQ chicken which will pair well with a medium-bodied red such as a Tempranillo, or Cotes du Rhone. 

If you are enjoying a stick of BBQ sauce on your chicken then your best choice to compliment the meal would be a Primitivo or a Zinfandel, perhaps even a sweet Rose would do the trick. 


The typical flavors you can expect from a Beaujolais include raspberries, strawberries, cherries, cranberry, currant, spices, violets, licorice, and more. You may even find some flavor of mushroom or banana in there too. 

Beaujolais is a light-bodied wine, low in tannins, but is very fruity in taste and aroma. It does have a high acidity as well, however, and is best served gently chilled. As a beverage, this wine tends to go well with chicken, such as BBQ chicken. 

It is often served alongside poultry, but can also be found served alongside veal and pasta as well. Due to its high acidity and fruitiness, it matches up well with plenty of food options. 

However, it will not go with every type of BBQ chicken, but thanks to its fruitiness, it will pair well with BBQ Chicken that has a sticky sauce. 

Best Chicken BBQ Wine Pairing Options

Pinot Noir

Pinot Noir is a popular red wine that is infamous in Europe but has also made its way to the New World where it has also caught traction in the wine market. The most popular and expensive Pinot Noir will come from Burgundy in France. 

This wine comes with typically fruity flavors including cranberry, strawberry, cherry, and raspberry. The color of a Pinot Noir is usually transparent, varying between light red to even blue when young. 

It is a very old grape and its flavor should be savored. As fruity as this is, it will probably do best with a simple BBQ sauce so as not to allow the flavor of the wine to be overpowered by an overabundance of flavor from the chicken.

Cotes Du Rhone

The typical flavors of a Cotes Du Rhone include spices, blueberries, plum, star anise, black cherry, licorice, pepper, and blackberry.

This wine is made in the French Rhone Valley, and if the wine is aged in oak barrels then you may also get other flavors. 

In this case, you could expect a hint of smoke, vanilla, leather, and even toast!  

It has a medium body with a medium level of tannins and fruit with a medium to high acidity which all makes it ideal for a savory BBQ chicken.

This red wine should be served at around room temperature, or 15-16 degrees Celsius/ 59-61 degrees Fahrenheit. 


This wine would work well with a savory BBQ chicken, as the flavors it provides are very fruity, with plum, cherries, blackberries, and blueberries all being prominent flavors.

However, if aged in oak you may also get hints of tobacco, caramel, vanilla, and even cocoa. 

Tempranillo has a good level of acidity and very smooth tannins, served at room temperature it pairs well with lamb, pork, and filet mignon, and can work in spicy or tomato-focused dishes.

This means it also works well with savory BBQ chicken.


Although wine is not a typical beverage to have with BBQ chicken, it works very well if you choose the right wine.

These 4 wines are the best choices for people who want to experience wine in a whole new way alongside a delicious chicken-based treat.

Sarah Perez
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