Cheese with Wine
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Pairings

Cheese with Wine

Wine and cheese have gone hand in hand for centuries; however, with today’s ever increasing options for both wine and cheese the pairing decisions can be staggering. So, to take a lot of the guess work out of pairing, here are some superb wine options that complement this delicious range.

Yannick Loué is a French wine expert based in the UK. He followed in his father’s footsteps by attending the Catering School of Paris and started his career in a Michelin star restaurant in France.

He then spent eight years working in the New Forest in England developing his passion for wine, discovering all the New World wines that he had never encountered before.

He loves to share his passion with others and is keen to break down the barriers that he feels are in place when it comes to talking about wine.

Keep in mind that these are just recommendations, taste is subjective, so feel free to try different wines yourself and find that ideal match for you.

Just as with any food pairing, it helps to think of either complementary or contrasting flavours. A lush wine works well with a triple-cream cheese, while an acidic wine will cut the cheese's sweetness. As you begin to try, taste the cheese first by itself, to get a sense of its character, and then put another bite into your mouth with some wine to see how they mingle.

Rembrandt has a very big flavour so you need to make sure that you pick a wine that is able to cut through the cheese. It is important to remember that the more mature the cheese the more it will overpower the wine, so pick one that will not be lost underneath the mature taste.

Cabernet wines are a great match for this, particularly Cabernet Franc as it offers the strength to cut through the cheese but not over power it and ruin both the flavour of the cheese and the wine. The sweetness of the wine compliments the big flavour of the cheese. The Saumur Champigny Veille Vigne 2010 is a good choice as it is rich and full bodied.

It is also important to pick a wine with a high level of acidity as this will help freshen the flavour of the cheese and clean the palette.

Other alternatives are:

  • Cabernet Sauvignon
  • South African Pinotage
  • Australian Shiraz
  • Heartland Dolcetto

Vincent is an aged Dutch cheese that is very rich and sweet tasting. Similar to the Rembrandt you want to pick a wine that is fruity and sweet in order to cut through the richness.

Riesling offers a very sweet taste to begin with that will help cut the richness of the cheese and provide a balanced taste.

The most important part of matching a wine to this cheese is making sure that the wine has a high level of acidity that will complement the sweet tasting element of the cheese. Something like Josef Chromy SRG Riesling 2010 is a great match in that it has instant sweet flavours before the acidity begins to come through to clear the palate and bring out the sweetness in the cheese.

Other alternatives are:

  • Chardonnay
  • French or Australian Gewurztraminer

The Vermeer is a fruity cheese with a nice full texture. However, the cheese contains less fat and less salt than the classic Gouda cheese. When choosing a wine to compliment the Vermeer, look for a light tasting fruity flavour that compliments the fact the cheese is lighter than classic Gouda yet supports the fruity full texture.

My favourite aspect of the wine paired with this cheese is how they provide explosions of texture and taste, such as the richness of the cheese and the berries in the wine. The explosions of richness are complimented by the blasts of fruity flavour, creating a perfect balanced taste.

The balance of richness with sweetness is very important to pairing the cheese and wine as the flavours must complement each other. A good fit is a Malbec, such as the Coliman Malbec Bonarda 2012. Again the wine helps to clean the palate.

Other alternatives are:

  • Merlot
  • Chardonnay
  • Planeta Cerasullo

Frans Hals is a luxurious aged goat's cheese which has a very full bodied taste and delicate aroma. When choosing a wine to complement the cheese it is important not to overpower the delicate aroma, this lends itself to picking a light fresh tasting wine.

The wines I have chosen are quite fruity and have a high level of acidity to cut through the full bodied creaminess of the cheese.

The key, again, is balance and a full bodied cheese needs to be complimented by a more light fruity taste. A Sauvignon Blanc is a great fit, something like a Los Haroldos

Other alternatives are:

  • Les Perles Pipuepoule de Pinet 2012
  • Gruner Vetliner