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Cereal and Wine Pairing Throw Down

Written by Madeline Puckette

You love wine. You also love cereal… particularly after getting in late after a long day. So, you get home and have a bowl of cereal whilst opening a bottle of wine without even thinking about what you are doing. Enter cereal + milk + wine. Is this even possible? It certainly seems like a good idea. After all, cereal is the only food that can follow an outstanding meal.

“Enter cereal + milk + wine. Is this even possible?”

Gary Vaynerchuk on Episode 734 of Wine Library TV
Gary V’s face with a mouthful of Riesling + Cap’n Crunch
We really can’t take credit for the inspiration of pairing wine with cereal. This ridiculous/genius idea was brought forth by Gary Vaynerchuk , the original social media monster of wine. 7 years ago (which is, by the way, more like 49 years on twitter) during episode #734, Gary V. matches a 95-point rated German Spätlese Riesing with Cap’n Crunch. He makes a particularly convincing expression which made us want to throw out all common logic and give the idea of putting cereal and wine together a try. Mind you, we’ve got a lot of practice (if you can call it that) pairing food and wine and we believe there is a system to making great pairings. And, BTW, he got the idea from George Carlin.

Cereal and Wine Pairing Throw Down

Cereal and Wine Pairings by Wine Folly


Cap’n Crunch

#1 best wine pairing cereal of the bunch. When you pair Cap’n Crunch with Ruby Port or Riesling, the combination somehow magically turns into a flavor mimicking Crunch Berries. It’s because the acid and fruit in the wine acts in a similar way to the berry flavoring in the cereal. It completely replaces the need for those weird blue-and-green-colored cereal balls. If you’re crazy enough to experiment with cereal pairings, this is a must-try.


Lucky Charms

A sweet style Riesling wine was the highlight pairing with Lucky Charms. The surprise pairing with Lucky Charms was the Zinfandel. While the match only scored a 7 (on a 1–10 scale), the cereal actually made the Zinfandel taste a little smoother and rounder. What’s interesting about this pairing is that the Lucky Charms create a more creamy taste profile which made us wonder if this pairing might almost work with oak-aged whites like Chardonnay or softer textured reds like a California Merlot or Pinot Noir.


Cinnamon Toast Crunch

The Port wine paired the best with Cinnamon Toast Crunch. The cinnamon in the cereal combined with the caramel and dark berry flavors in the wine creating an interesting, almost chocolaty-like texture. Because there’s so much sugar on the Cinnamon Toast Crunch, it’s definitely one to consider for dessert wines.


Choco Chimps

We had very high hopes for the Port and Madeira for the Cocoa Puff/Choco Chimp combination. As expected, they did perform the best but only scored a 7.5, which in our book doesn’t qualify as a perfect pairing. What was interesting was how awful the Zinfandel tasted when matched with the chocolate-milk like quality of this cereal. This experience will go down as more proof that dry red wine and chocolate are not bedfellows.


Peanut Butter Puffins

For those of you that shop in the natural food aisle, we just had to try Peanut Butter Puffins to see how well “hippy-friendly” cereals match with wine. Not really.

Selected Wines

When creating this wine pairing throw down we used a few simple wine pairing rules to come up with our 4 selected wines (Sweet Riesling, Zinfandel, Medium Dry Madeira and Ruby Port):

Try this at home

Clearly, this is something you can try at home! Find new matches for the cereals listed above or come up with your own unique pairings. If you’re going to do it, definitely include the Cap’n Crunch + Sweet Riesling pairing as your benchmark for a 9 (on a scale of 1–10). Link us in @winefolly and maybe use the hashtag #CerealWinePairing so we can ogle at your delights.

Madeline Puckette attempts to pair wine with Lucky Charms
Author, Madeline Puckette trying to take cereal pairings very seriously.

Written byMadeline Puckette

James Beard Award-winning author and Wine Communicator of the Year. I co-founded Wine Folly to help people learn about wine. @WineFolly

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