Caviar And Potato Chips Are An Unrivaled Pairing

Forecasted food trends for 2024 included sleep-inducing drinks, fermented foods, and mushrooms, among others. Some of those may not be so unexpected, but what may be a surprising prediction is that luxury foods may rise in popularity. And given that caviar is most definitely having a moment, that forecast may not be far off.

Caviar is often served with blinis and perhaps crème fraîche and potato, but you can also eat it straight from the spoon. But if you want a pairing for your caviar that's as tasty as it is whimsical, turn to potato chips.

It may seem out of the ordinary to use your crispy chips as a canvas for something as upscale as a caviar tasting. However, pairing fancy food and drinks with basic ingredients isn't a new concept — just look to fried chicken and Champagne as the perfect example. Plus, consider this: Paramount Caviar, La Patiala's 2023 pick for The Best Caviar Company for Gourmands, serves baked chips at tastings at its Caviar Vault in New York City and offers them for purchase online as a caviar accouterment, too.

The Caviar Co. thinks chips belong with caviar, too. In fact, the San Francisco-based company is apparently so enthusiastic about the pairing that it has rolled out an entire collection in collaboration with Pringles with flavors like Original, Plain, and Sour Cream & Onion. So, it's not so far-fetched to think that the two go together, but how do you know which to pair?

Pairing chips and caviar

As with any pairing, you'll need to consider the flavor profile of both foods. It's already clear that there's no shortage of flavors of potato chips, but it's important to remember that the flavor of caviar can vary, too. Some may be more nutty or buttery while others may have more notes of brine or a saltier flavor.

Once you know the nuances of the caviar that you're pairing, you can choose a complementary flavored potato chip. When matching up flavors, consider that you marry together similar flavors — ones that are bold, for example — or you can let contrasting flavors mingle. For instance, particularly briny caviar may pair surprisingly well with the pronounced flavors of BBQ or Crab Chips while more delicate roe may be better suited for chips that pack less of a punch. Of course, there's also the option to start with plain chips that are likely to let the flavor of any of the varieties shine.

When it comes to the perfect pairing, you'll also want to consider texture. Crispier chips offer an ideal contrast while oilier varieties may impede your ability to enjoy the full flavor of the caviar. Of course, as with any food match-up, it comes down to personal preference. Instead of choosing just one, consider doing a flight-style tasting and incorporating various types of chips, caviar, or both to determine which works best for you.

What to sip with a chip and caviar pairing

If you're trying to turn your tasting into the perfect food and drink trifecta, add some alcohol into the mix. For liquor, look to vodka — not only is it a traditional accompaniment to caviar, but its neutrality makes it least likely to interfere with the other flavors.

You can also turn to wine or beer to wash your chips and caviar down. For beers, try a porter or a pilsner to go with white sturgeon or a hefeweizen to accompany bourbon trout. Meanwhile, an amber ale can aptly complement paddlefish, plain whitefish, or truffle whitefish. And all four styles are a great match for osetra — aka Caspian sturgeon.

When it comes to wine, lighter varieties are more common, from bubbly brut or rose to sauvignon blanc and chardonnay. Roses pair particularly well with saffron whitefish while dry bubbly whites can be perfect for osetra. Sauvignon blanc is the perfect sip with saffron whitefish and hackelback while Chardonnay can be paired with trout. Some reds are up for the job, too. Look to pinot noir or cabernet sauvignon — either of these will mingle well with California white sturgeon.

Of course, if you want to get complex, you can consider the flavor of your chips as well. In that case, you may already have a favorite in mind. Or, perhaps it's an opportunity to also explore how to pair potato chips and wine.