Recently, a handful of (hungry and thirsty) Crystal Geyser Sparkling Water Company staff gathered for a food and beverage tasting experiment. Rather than taking a scientific lab approach to assess the attributes of the pairings offered, we elected to eat and drink as people in the real world do… and had a nice lunch get together in our office kitchen. There was a nice spread of hot and cold food options ranging from spicy sweet kale salad to melt in your mouth grilled salmon fillets. Armed with glasses of our Crystal Geyser 1977 Sparkling Natural Mineral Water, our team set out to discover our favorite pairings.
1977 Sparkling Natural Mineral Water: Original, Black Currant, Chardonnay Grape, and Lemon Zest
We started off with spicy/sweet kale and cranberry salad and then sampled summer fresh roasted peach and heirloom salad. Continuing with cold plates, we tested how our sparkling water fared with assorted sushi. Then we moved to two different types of chicken (rotisserie and marinated lemon), accompanied by a medley of roasted vegetables and candied sweet potatoes. Grilled salmon fillets were the final entrée. Lastly, we closed the sampling with some green grapes.
Highlights from our staff tasters:
“Grilled salmon with a twist of lemon juice and Black Currant 1977 Sparkling Water. The “fruity-ness” yet crispness from the mineral water was complementary to the buttery salmon. Because the sparkling water is not sweet, the pairing reminded me of drinking a sauvignon blanc from New Zealand (fruit forward but has some weight).” -Lorna
“My favorite combo was Black Currant 1977 with Candied Yams – the sweetness of the yams complemented the fruitiness of the sparkling mineral water but neither competed with the other.” -Neveen
“Our Chardonnay Grape 1977 paired equally well everything from the grilled zucchini to the rotisserie chicken and grilled salmon.” -Trevor
“1977 Original & Lemon Zest paired well with most everything. Very refreshing and cleansed the palate between dishes.” -Michelle
“The Chardonnay Grape sparkling water partnered well with the grilled salmon. Nice flavor.” -Yasu
Overall, the CGWC team agreed that the 1977 Original and Lemon Zest paired well across the varieties of dishes... no surprise. Many commented that they worked well as palate cleansers. Notable mention: 1977 Chardonnay Grape was found to be a surprisingly versatile accompaniment across the dishes, a few tasters noted how well it paired with the roasted vegetables. Its ‘sweet’ notes were lauded for bringing out the sweetness in the zucchinis and for cleansing the palate.
Our experiment, while in no means scientific, provided to be a successful, fun, team building experience which uncovered new food/beverage pairings. We encourage you to gather a bunch of your friends, raise a glass and discover new pairings!