Wine and Cheese Pairing : Understand The Basics

Cheese and wine often share some standard features. So, there is no wonder that wine lovers frequently pair up wine and cheese. Both of these objects are available in various manners. In the making process of environmental and regional customs, sometimes mingled with the weather, field, and other things of nature that are not permanent. Therefore, one product range differs from the next one. Pests and molds also contribute to taste like the temperature of consumption.

Tannins, acidity, crispness, and age of the wine should also be kept in mind while pairing it with cheese. The production processes, maintaining methods, and the makers’ approach also have roles in wine and cheese pairing.

But every kind of cheese can’t be paired with any wine. Pairing cheese with wine is as technical as pairing any food with wine. If you pair your wine with any cheese, it will prevent you from enjoying your drinking. Here we will discuss the perfect wine and cheese pairing. Let’s get started:

Types of cheese for wine

Before we discuss how to pair your wine with cheese, we feel that every wine lover should know the types of cheese that can accompany wines. So, here are the types of cheese for wine:

Hard cheese of cow

Hard cheese of cow

Hard cheese made of cow milk is rich and contains the aroma of nuts. So, you need to pair with full red wine; otherwise, the flavor of the cheese may go over the fragrance of your wine. Asiago, Comte, Cotija, Emmental, Grana Padano, etc., are some hard cow’s cheese varieties.

Hard cheese of sheep

Hard cheese of sheep

Hard cheese made with the milk of sheep is dry and salty. They have a strong aftertaste so that you can pair them easily with full-bodied red or white wines. Some famous sheep milk cheeses are the Feta of Greece, Roquefort of France; Manchego made in Spain, and Italian the Pecorino Romano and Ricotta.

Semi-hard cheese

Semi-hard cheese

Semi-hard cheese is fatty. It is well for white wines with good acidity. Gouda, Edam, Parmesan, Maasdam, and Gruyere are some examples of semi-hard cheese types.

Blue cheese

Blue cheese

Blue cheese has a complex and robust taste. It is deep, creamy, salty, and spicy, and therefore it should be paired with structured wines. Some blue cheese varieties include Adelost, Aura cheese, Beenleigh Blue, Bleu d’Auvergne, Bleu de Bresse, Cambozola, Rokpol, Saga, etc.

Soft cheese

Soft cheese

Usually, these French cheese varieties are runny and can hardly be a good pair with wines. But light red wines with fruity notes and spicy, flavorful wines can be paired with this particular ammonic, farmyard aroma. Soft cheese varieties include feta, Brie, ricotta, cream cheese, Camembert, Chevre, Roquefort, Gorgonzola, and cottage cheese.

Cheese made of mature goat’s milk

Cheese made of mature goat’s milk

Cow and goat milk contain similar properties. Nevertheless, fatty acids are higher in a goat’s milk that offers a tart flavor it. Mature goat’s cheese can beat red wines in crisp. You can pair this cheese with Heggies Chardonnay to balance its acidity with the cheese. Some mature goat’s cheese examples are Valencay cheese, Bucheron, Chabichou, Majorero, Picodon, etc.

Fresh cheese made of goat’s milk

Fresh cheese made of goat’s milk

These cheese types are young, fresh, and grassy. It can be paired with full-bodied rose wines to balance the creaminess. But if you want to try something different, try it with floral off-dry English white wines. Some fresh goat’s cheese names include Banon wrapped in chestnut leaves, Crottin de Chavignol, Garrotxa cheese, etc.

How to pair wine and cheese

Wine lovers often wonder which cheese can offer them the desired taste during pair wine with cheese. There are some characteristics of the wine as well as of cheese varieties that should be kept in mind while selecting the pair. If you fail to match according to that characteristic, you will not get the desired taste. So, here are some tips on which cheese flavors are perfect for what kind of wine. Therefore, it will be easy for you to pair cheese and wine.

  • It would be best not to consume an intense wine with a cheese that is not so strong. The reason is that then the pungent aroma will win over the mild one, and you may not have a pleasurable drinking experience.
  • When you offer wine to your guest, please don’t force them to pair as per your preference. Everyone has a different tastebud. So, offer them red and white wine and let them decide their cheese pairing according to their taste.
  • Sparking wines tasted better with soft cheese. You can also pair soft cheese with light oak flavored white wines like Chardonnay.
  • For complimenting the rich aromas of full-bodied wine, matured cheese six months or more aged is the best.

Best wine and cheese pairing

Some best wine and cheese pairing are:

Pinot Noir and Gruyere

The red berry notes of Pinot Noir can be paired well with the nutty-flavored soft cheese such as Gruyere. Both the wine and cheese have strong flavors that there is no chance of one dominating the other’s aroma. Probably the most common Wine and Cheese Pairing.

Matured Port and Blue Stilton

Matured Port is full-bodied, sweet, and of solid nature. Therefore, some stinky cheese is required to complement this wine. The savory and salty blue cheese variety Stilton is the best to pair with aged Port.

Champagne and Brie

Brie is soft and creamy and needs keen acidity that can cut its fat. High in acidity, Champagne is a perfect pair with the rich, creamy texture of brie.

Moscato d’Asti and Gorgonzola

A sweeter wine should be paired with funky tasted cheese. If Moscato and other sweet white wines can be paired with funky Gorgonzola, it will provide another taste level.

Tempranillo and Idiazabal

Tempranillo and Idiazabal are both aged and make a perfect pair. They have a smoky, savory aroma that compliments each other perfectly. Full-bodied Spanish wine Tempranillo matches wonderfully with a more rigid Idiazabel texture, and the tannins of the wine are a contrast to its buttery taste.

Sauvignon Blanc and Goat cheese

The greatest goat cheeses are blank, and the citrus and mineral present in the French wine Sauvignon explore the aromas of nuts and herbs in the cheese nicely. The acidity contents in the wine are perfect for reducing the richness of this cheese. Just another very loved Wine and Cheese Pairing.

Provence Rose and Havarti

The crisp, dry, red fruity notes that are there in the Provence Rose are elegant in taste but soft. The mellow flavor of Havarti is perfect to match with this kind of wine.

Riesling and Raclette

Riesling is high in acidity with the aroma of stone fruit. So, smooth and buttery Raclette forms a nice pair with Riesling.

Chianti Classico and Pecorino Toscano

These two are also matured forms of wines and cheeses. The hard and grown formation of Pecorino is perfect for the tannins of the Chianti Classico.

Vermentino and Fiore Sardo

Vermentino is an oily textured wine with the aroma of saline. It has a citrus flavor that enhances fruity acid contents. A nutty and saline flavored cheese Fiore Sardo is perfect to pair with this wine.

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Here we have listed which character and flavor of wine matches with which character and taste of the cheese. So, whether you are paring red wine and cheese, or white wine and cheese, this guide will help you make a perfect Wine and Cheese Pairing.