Looking for a simple guide to wine and cheese pairings for beginners? Then keep reading for some great tips to assist at your next party or wine tasting.
Sipping a fine wine accompanied by a selection of tasty cheese really is one of the great moments in life. And so it is only natural that wine and cheese pairing is a common subject among many people today and throughout history.
So if you are serving a cheese platter at a dinner and need to match the correct wines to please your guests, then look no further, We will endeavour to share our experience on the matter and put your mind at ease once and for all.
And don’t be afraid about having left over wine once people leave. We recently covered this issue in How long does wine last once the bottle is opened?, so check that out if you are concerned about wasting any leftover wine.
Before we discuss cheese pairing though, a small disclaimer: in our opinion there is no absolute right and wrong guide to pairing wine and cheese.
While we may endeavour to classify wines by their body, acidity, grape variety or sweetness, and cheese by its texture, hardness, fat content or flavour, the correct pairing for you may simply come down to personal likes and dislikes.
So please use what we say as a guide, but always apply your own personal choice to any final decision.
Let’s look at it from the point of the view of the cheese being served. Will it be fresh and soft, semi-hard through to medium-aged, blue, smelly, or aged? Some wines will overlap quite easily and be suitable for a number of different cheeses, while some will not.
The main ones for you to consider will be:
Fresh And Soft Cheese
This is our starting point and might find these being served either before the meal, with it, or following a main course. Camembert, Feta, Robiola, Brie, Robiola, and the like will pair very easily with the lighter wines such as a dry Riesling or a nice Chardonnay.
A sweet Moscato also pairs well, as does a fine white Port, a bubbly Sparkling, a Pinot Blanc, or a fruity white wine like an Evans & Tate Classic Sauvignon Blanc.
Semi-Hard To Medium Aged Cheese
As we move on to stronger tasting cheese with more texture, it might be appropriate to partake in a wine that has more body and structure. Here you might be serving a young Cheddar, Edam, Jarlsberg, Gouda, Parmesan or Monterey Jack.
These would match really well with a glass of Sherry or vintage Port, Merlot, Pinot Noir or Pinot Blanc, Cabernet Sauvignon, Chianti, many Sparkling wines, Viognier as well as a dry Chardonnay.
If you are a fan of blue cheese you need to be looking at a wider range of wines to deal with the additional flavours and boldness. This will include the like of Cambozola, Stilton and Gorgonzola.
Ideal wines for this occasion may include aged Ports, Sherry and Tokay.
For those stinky cheese like Morbier and Taleggio, you want to choose wines which complement them, not compete. Choose simple wines like Riesling and Pinot Noir.
At the end of the day, if you are limited to the number of wines you are able to serve with cheese, or you are serving a wide variety of cheese on one platter, we would suggest staying with a simple Riesling or Sparkling wine.
You may not please everyone, but you will be assured of winning the crowd over by pairing a good wine with a suitable cheese.
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Living each adventure,
Christine and Trevor
Empowering people to live a healthy, authentic and fulfilling, personal and business life.
Adelaide, South Australia.
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DISCLAIMER: This article is written for informational purposes only and is based on Christine and Trevor’s own life experiences. No food featured on this site should ever be consumed or handled if known or suspected allergies exist. Nothing featured here should be taken as medical, professional or legal advice. It is always recommended that you consult the appropriate professional before changing any routine, adopting any new procedure or using any new product. We provide relevant links in each post to services or products of relevance to that topic. Many are unpaid links, while others may be affiliate links. They are included because of their relevance above all else.