Fried chicken is a soulful food for soulful gatherings, bringing people together with its lip-lickin’ greasy goodness and utter unpretentiousness. In the South, people drink soda or sweet tea or beer with their fried chicken, all of which are unfortunate shortcuts to Bloat City. To avoid bloating and to discover true deliciousness, one must drink WINE with their fried chicken. But what wine? Fried chicken is greasy, fatty, and salty, meaning that it needs wine with finesse to balance its intensity. The obvious choice is bubbles, namely Champagne. The acidity, hint of sweetness, carbonation, and toasty flavors of Champagne complement fried chicken flawlessly, cleansing the palate with every sip, preventing diminishing returns on each bite. But Champagne isn’t the most budget-friendly beverage, so instead we’re applying the fried chicken pairing formula to some alternative and affordable wines. Wines that work will have acidity, savoriness, maybe some sweetness, and if red, plush, fat-ripping tannins. Cheers y’all. And shoutout to Chef Jen and Zay in the kitchen for the fried chicken!