Fret not, for there is a surprising array of wines that pair nicely with the zesty flavors of Tex-Mex and southwest cuisine.
One of the best, and perhaps most obvious, choices is a New Zealand sauvignon blanc. Crisp and refreshing, this wine helps temper the hot and spicy flavors of the food, much in the way beer does.
Red wine lovers should reach for a Beaujolais. Made from the gamay grape, this wine is soft and fruity, other qualities that help soften the cuisine.
If what you’re eating is more southwest style with lots of cayenne or chili spice, a good German riesling will satisfy nicely. This wine is also an excellent choice with ceviche.
Two good red wines are a California cabernet or zinfandel – they offer enough body to stand up to the food but are fruity enough to offset the heat of the dish.
Should a tomato-based sauce be lurking in your dish, reach for a barbera from Italy’s Piedmont region. This red wine’s acidity and body beautifully complements the piquancy of the sauce.
Finally, chenin blanc is another good all-around white wine selection. Look for one from South Africa for a fruitier taste on the palate.