Pairing wine and food must always be about enjoying the meal (event) and not about obeying the so called rules.
Wine and food pairing has some semi-rigid guidelines and some aspects that is guided by individual preferences. It can be difficult to find a balance between the different pairing approaches but at the end of the day it must work for you.
The old rule of “White wine with white meat and red wine with red meat” can be such a rigid way of pairing wine and food. The problem is that you only pair the wine with the meat and not with the sauce. The sauce must be taken into account when pairings are done because that is the main taste catalyst of the dish.
A steak with a garlic butter sauce can be complemented by a buttery Chardonnay. And spicy fish dishes can be complemented by peppery Shiraz wines.
On the other hand, food and wine connoisseurs sometimes goes a bit over the top when trying to pair wine with the slightest aspect of one of the ingredients. Like pairing wine with the sort of salt or a minor spice ingredient.
Another thing is; Where does Rosé wines fit into the old “White with white and Red with red” rule? Does this mean you only drink Rosé wine with well done steaks or with “pink” fish like salmon? No of course not. Rosé wines are fantastic food partners with lighter examples matching salads, chicken dishes and fish with denser, darker versions standing up to steak and game.
Do not over analyse and remember just enjoy whatever you end up eating and drinking – it’s not an ordeal, it’s an experience.