Grilled Buffalo Burgers and Shiraz Food and Wine Pairing

The video has all the information about making the grilled buffalo burger, as well as the tasting notes on the wine. Let me know what you think of it, by leaving a comment below, or rating it on YouTube!

What are we drinking?

I’ve made a lot of great friends on Twitter, and quite a few have asked for food and wine pairing advice. I recently started collaborating with Robyn Medlin from Grill Grrrl, a website all about grilling some fantastic meals. We’ve discussed quite a few projects, which we’ll be rolling them out to you in the next few weeks. Robyn and I got on the topic of her grilled buffalo burgers, and I decided to make them for lunch and pair with a nice shiraz, the 2007 Vinaceous Snake Charmer.

Where does the wine come from?

McLaren Vale Australia

McLaren Vale Australia

McLaren Vale, one of Australia’s renowned wine regions, is located in Southern Australia. It’s famous for Shiraz, which accounts for 50% or more of it’s production annually. Vinaceous does not have it’s own vineyards, but rather sources it’s fruit from various vineyards in the area.

What does the wine taste like?

The video has all of the tasting notes you’ll need, but there’s definitely some nice berry fruit coupled with a great peppery finish. It’s a wine that changed from the time I opened it, until we finished the meal. I preferred it after 20 to 30 minutes of air, as you’ll see in the video.

What to pair it with?

If you saw my short writeup about the Syrah/Shiraz grape, you’ve seen some of the things that can pair with the Vinaceous Snake Charmer Shiraz. Grilled meats, whether lamb, beef, sausage, or obviously buffalo, are a natural food and Shiraz wine pairing. It does well with aged and hard cheeses such as Gouda and Parmesan.


Coming in at around $20, the Vinaceous Snake Charmer 2007 Shiraz is everything you’d expect from a McLaren Vale wine. Big fruit flavors with an aggressive pepper finish out of the bottle, it mellows nicely with air, and compliments almost anything you throw on the grill. However, don’t take my word for it! Grab a bottle of the Snake Charmer, pop the .. screw top .. and come back and comment on it below! And as always, Cheers!

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14 thoughts on “Grilled Buffalo Burgers and Shiraz Food and Wine Pairing

  1. [...] Read this article: Grilled Buffalo Burgers and Shiraz Food and Wine Pairing | A Good … [...]

  2. Summer Boone says:

    ok, i totally need a buffalo burger and snakecharmer. well, still contemplating the buffalo part…but a grilled burger for sure. GREAT video….love the “vlog” and love how you simplified the post below with an answer question format! Great post matt!!


  3. Thanks Sum! Robyn (Grill Grrrl) and I have a host of other collaborations under way. Strap in, it’s going to be a hungry ride :) Thanks for the great comments and compliments on the site. I’m trying to keep wine fun and approachable, but still informative. Let me know how I can help make your all of your experiences a good time with wine :)

  4. Matt – I wanna learn the knife trick you have at the beginning! :) Tips: slow down a bit – almost missed twittername! Love the energy. would suggest having the list of ingredients on the screen too, or below in case they miss them. Also, the waving knife kind of freaked me out! when you mention the wine, show the bottle right away. loved the text after you introduced it for spelling. loved your explanation of the screw top – so many people think they are bad! Would love to know why u use charcoal vs gas in the video? Also, should explain why no condiments on the burger?Also, what else would this wine be good with? Maybe something veggie or desert? Anyway, just my thoughts. great video :)

  5. Kirsten- Thanks for your comments! The knife trick was one I learned while working as a line cook years ago. It’s about the only trick I have!

    Yes, you are right, i do need to slow down. I have all of this information in my head, and it’s bursting to get out. I’m working on that! And honestly, as I watched the video myself, the whole flicking the knife around freaked ME out. I was thinking of a way to edit it out, or superimpose a bunny or something! However, I’m not that talented of an editor yet!

    As for showing the wine – I agree! I tried to get it in the shot via editing, like I did later, but i couldnt find the room. It’s something I am thinking about now, so i’ll be sure to do so in the future!

    I used to be a gas grill guy – but I switched about a year ago when mine blew up :) There are pictures of my using the fire extinguisher on Facebook somewhere! Grill Grrrl Robyn Medlin, the impetus for this post, uses gas! And it’s a kick butt gas grill! While there’s a bit of romanticism about coal grilling, it’s almost like corks v screwtops. Gas rocks, I just decided to go coals.

    Robin (my Robin) asked the same Q about the condiments. I added the tomato and lettuce, but since this was my first ever buffalo burger, I didnt want condiments to mask the flavors. Honestly, I’m glad I went that way, because the meat had SO much flavor, it didnt need anything else. Also, while the wine would have gone just fine with the condiments, I wanted to minimize the number of competing flavors.

    Regarding other pairings, if you look at the post itself, not the video, I have what it pairs with and and over all recap. It’s hard to fit everything in during a 5 min video, which is probably 1-2 min too long for 90% of the people out there. I also have a separate post, no video on that one, that explains Shiraz/Syrah and includes typical pairings.

    Oh – and no desserts! I’ll have a “Picking A Dessert Wine” post soon – next week or two :)

    You rock! Thanks for the great comments.

  6. Looked pretty good! I noticed a lighting problem in the kitchen at first but then it seemed like you solved it later! I liked the bottle at the end on the right of the screen so people can easily tell what you are drinking and talking about also.

    Maybe something for noobs would be to show when you swirl the wine in the glass and explain why you are doing it, while swirling…??

    I would have liked to have heard about some other food it would pair well with but it was really well done!

    For some reason it almost seemed rushed to me..?? transitioned from the wine to the food to the wine in a short time period but that may just be me :)

    Very good job! I look forward to more!


  7. Mike-
    Thanks for visiting and for commenting!

    I did have some technical problems with the camera. I call them “Robinisms”! I blame the blond! Actually – it’s my fault, i forgot to change the settings on the camera!

    Good point about the swirling – I’ll be sure to add that info in the future. The technical term is “volitizing the esthers” – but basically I’m allowing the scent, or bouquet to escape the glass. I’m also adding air into the wine, allowing it to oxygenate and open up a little. Wine sometimes needs air to open up, as it “breaks down”, the flavors come out a little. Of course, with time and air, wines break down and become “flat” – so too much air isn’t a good thing. That’s a quick and dirty reply, but I can get more geek on it in a future post.

    I ran out of time to talk about other pairings, but as I said to Kirsten – I included it in the text part of the post, as well as on the Syrah/Shiraz post earlier in the week.

    As for rushed, I do try to keep the video to a 5 min max, so I had to get in all the burger prep, cooking, discussion, as well as all of the wine info. I probably could have cut a little of the burger prep out, but since Robyn (Grill Grrrl) was so good to give me the inspiration for the burgers, I thought it was important to include it. I’m always conscious about timing, but I’ll keep it in mind for the future!

    I’m remiss in posting cigar and wine pairings, as well as a Guest Post for SR! So, keep coming back and see what comes up!

  8. Matt,

    You’ve done a fantastic job you kept it pretty darn concise for all that you put in the video. I like the bottle shot at the end. Your intro is fantastic maybe you should consider a short 10 second outro too.

    Anyway, super impressed!

    Josh @nectarwine on Twitter

  9. Josh,
    As always, thank you for your comments and your support! It’s great to have someone else in the wine community respond the way you do!!

    If you come back tomorrow – I’ll have a video up on the Tempranillo grape, and it’s got my 1st outro :) Let me know your thoughts, ok?


  10. I love buffalo meat, so glad to know what wine works with it.

  11. There are a host of other wines that would go with Buffalo. As I go through the next few months, I’ll be doing short posts introducing specific grapes, or wine regions. I’ll then post a wine from that grape or region, tying the two together. This way, one post doesnt have a ton of overload about the grape, the region and the specific wine. I’ll try to refer back to posts like this when I think the wine would work!

    Thanks for visiting, and your comment and come back soon, Shannon!

  12. Great video. You made me hungry for buffalo burgers, but I need to improve my grilling skills.

  13. LOVE the vlogging format! I KNOW nothing about wine, but enjoy learning, especially when it comes to food pairings. Does one swish while eating too or is swishing used only during tasting? I love the “no need to fear the twist off top” Great job!

  14. Thanks Jenna! I appreciate your comment AND your compliment. I’m trying to make it an approachable format. I want to engage you, and get you to interact with me, and the other viewers, and make the site someplace you come frequently for wine information and updates.

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