White Wine Velouté Sauce

Sturgeon with spinach flan, black trumpet mushrooms and white wine sauce

Luca Trovato/Getty Images

Prep: 5 mins
Cook: 10 mins
Total: 15 mins
Servings: 32 servings
Nutrition Facts (per serving)
55 Calories
2g Fat
0g Carbs
8g Protein
Show Full Nutrition Label Hide Full Nutrition Label
Nutrition Facts
Servings: 32
Amount per serving
Calories 55
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 2g 3%
Saturated Fat 1g 7%
Cholesterol 21mg 7%
Sodium 30mg 1%
Total Carbohydrate 0g 0%
Dietary Fiber 0g 0%
Total Sugars 0g
Protein 8g
Vitamin C 0mg 0%
Calcium 7mg 1%
Iron 0mg 1%
Potassium 114mg 2%
*The % Daily Value (DV) tells you how much a nutrient in a food serving contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calories a day is used for general nutrition advice.
(Nutrition information is calculated using an ingredient database and should be considered an estimate.)

In French cuisine, sauces take center stage, and every culinary student learns about the five mother sauces. Each start with a different liquid and are then thickened, most of them by a roux. They are referred to as "mother sauces" because there are several other sauces that are based on these five: béchamel, velouté, espagnole, hollandaise, and classic tomato. One of these sauces is the white wine sauce, based off of the velouté sauce. It is a finished sauce made by reducing white wine and then simmering it in a basic fish velouté and some heavy cream.

The white wine sauce is an ideal accompaniment for all kinds of fish and seafood dishes. It is also the foundation from which a number of other classical sauces are built, such as the herb sauce, the shrimp sauce, or the Venetian sauce.


  • 1/2 cup heavy cream

  • 1/2 cup dry white wine

  • 1 quart fish velouté

  • 1 tablespoon unsalted butter

  • Kosher salt, to taste

  • Freshly ground white pepper, to taste

  • 1 dash lemon juice, to taste

Steps to Make It

  1. In a heavy-bottomed saucepan, gently heat the heavy cream to just below a simmer, but don't let it boil. Cover and keep warm.

  2. In a separate saucepan, simmer the wine until it has reduced by half.

  3. Add the fish velouté to the wine, bring to a boil, then lower heat to a simmer and reduce for about 5 minutes, or until the total volume has reduced by about 1 cup.

  4. Stir the warm cream into the wine mixture and bring it back to a simmer for just a moment.

  5. Stir in the butter, season to taste with kosher salt and white pepper, and add just a dash of lemon juice. Strain through cheesecloth and serve right away.

What Is Fish Velouté?

Velouté is one of the five mother sauces and is made with any white stock such as fish, veal, or chicken. It is made by combining a roux—melted butter and flour cooked to a pale yellow paste—with fish stock and simmered until it is reduced and has a velvety consistency. The fish stock is what makes the white wine sauce ideal to serve with seafood.

Choosing a White Wine

When cooking with wine, particularly when making a sauce, you want to keep in mind that when the alcohol is cooked off you are left with the sweetness and the acidity. So you want to choose a nice, dry white wine for making this sauce. Of course, a French varietal would be quite appropriate, but if you are choosing from what you have in your wine collection, selecting a pinot grigio or sauvignon blanc is best. A chardonnay will also work as long as it is not too buttery and oaky.