It’s all in the sauce……….

January 1, 2023

Five Mother Sauces of Classical Cuisine and Their Pairings

The five mother sauces are the base sauces from which most other cooked sauces are made. By incorporating additional ingredients into a mother sauce, you can create numerous small or compound sauces.

Béchamel Sauce:

This is a simple sauce to make, which is one of the only mother sauces that does not require a broth base.

Bèchamel is a rich, creamy, smooth white sauce with a subtle onion flavor made by simmering an onion studded with whole cloves in mild and adding the infused milk (minus the onion) to a white roux.

The Béchamel sauce is a typical sauce used in white lasagna dishes, cream sauce pasta, and white meat dishes…..

Here are some of the small sauces made from béchamel: Cream Sauce, Mornay Sauce, Soubise Sauce, Nantua Sauce, Cheddar Cheese Sauce, Mustard Sauce, Cheesy Sauce

Best Wine Pairing for Béchamel Sauce: Chardonnay, Pinot Gris, Neuburger, Semillon, Chenin Blanc, Pinot Blanc…..

Velouté Sauce:

This mother sauce can come in many varieties if you differentiate the broth base. Depending on what dish you are using your sauce in, you may want to use a chicken, veal, or fish broth.

Velouté sauce is very much like a Béchamel but differs in that it has no milk, but instead uses broth. It is slightly more versatile in dishes since various broths can cater to different dishes and can work very well with baked fish dishes…..

Each of the veloutés forms the basis of its own respective secondary mother sauce.

For instance, chicken velouté fortified with cream becomes the Supreme Sauce. Veal velouté thickened with egg yolks and cream becomes the Allemande Sauce. And the fish velouté plus white wine and heavy cream becomes the White Wine Sauce.

Small sauces from velouté can be derived from the velouté directly, or from each of the three secondary sauces. For example Normandy Sauce, Bercy Sauce, Hungarian Sauce, Mushroom Sauce, Aurora Sauce, Poulette Sauce, Herb Seafood Sauce

Best Wine Pairing for Velouté Sauce: Dry Sparkling Wine…..


Espagnole Sauce:

The Espagnole sauce is a brown mother sauce that is similar to a velouté but is instead made with beef broth.

Espagnole Sauce is a full-bodied sauce made by adding brown roux, pureed tomatoes, and mirepoix to brown stock: usually used to make demi-glace.

Espagnole sauce goes well with meat dishes such as Beef Tenderloin…..

Here are some examples of small sauces made from Espagnole: Marchand de Vin Sauce (Red Wine Reduction), Robert Sauce, Charcutière Sauce, Lyonnaise Sauce, Chasseur Sauce, Bercy Sauce, Mushroom Sauce, Madeira Sauce, Port Wine Sauce

Best Wine Pairing for Espagnole Sauce:
Fruity white wines such as Gewürtztraminer, dry Rieslings, Chasselas, Traminer, white Rioja, spanish Rosados, Arbois Blanc, Gaillac Blanc, Bellet Blanc, Chinon, Minervois, Chianti Classico, Pinot noir, Blauburger…..

Hollandaise Sauce:

Hollandaise sauce may be one of the most well-known sauces by name. It is a tangy, buttery sauce that finds perfection in consistency.

Hollandaise Sauce is a smooth, buttery, pale yellow sauce made by whisking melted butter into a mixture of egg yolks, lemon juice, or vinegar.

Hollandaise sauce can be used on its own, and it’s particularly delicious on seafood, vegetables, and eggs…

But there are also a number of small sauces that can be made from Hollandaise: Béarnaise Sauce, Dijon Sauce, Foyot Sauce, Choron Sauce, Maltaise Sauce

Best Wine Pairing for Hollandaise Sauce: Champagne blanc de blanc, oaked Chardonnay, Pinot Blanc, Graves blanc, Hermitage Blanc, or soft Pinot Noir

Classic Tomate Sauce:

This is similar to the tomato sauce we all know but differs in that it is richer, contains pork fat, and is blended with a roux.

Sauce Tomat is perfect with dishes such as Italian gnocchi and polenta……

Here are a few small sauces made from the classic tomato sauce: Spanish Sauce, Creole Sauce, Portuguese Sauce, Provençale Sauce

Best Wine Pairing for Sauce Tomat: Depending on the acidity of the tomato and the dish it is accompanying, Verduzzo, Vermentino, Semillon-Sauvignon, a Nebbiolo-based red could work well with this sauce, or southern Rhone i.e Chateauneuf du Pape…..

Copyright ©: Dominik Kozlik – Zeitgeist Sommelier –

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