A few tips in choosing which cheeses to pair with which wines:

We all tend to be intimidated by the thought of pairing wine and cheese. It’s not as daunting a task as one might think. The most important tip is to choose cheeses and wines that you like; usually your own taste buds will guide you.

That being said, here are two easy guidelines to assist you:

  1. Your cheeses and wines should complement each other; mild cheeses pair well with lighter wines and more pungent cheeses pair well with more robust wines. The secret here is to avoid having either overpowered by the other. For example, if you pair a semi-soft cheese with a Cabernet Sauvignon, the cheese taste will be lost to the robust flavor of the Cab.
  2. Choosing cheeses and wines from the same region is also an excellent way to find sublime pairings. For example pairing Seattle-based Beecher’s Flagship with a Washington Syrah would be a nice pairing or pairing a French Brie with a French Champagne would also make an enjoyable taste sensation.

I have prepared this chart to assist you in successfully pairing cheeses and wines for your next event or quiet evening at home relaxing:

Cheese White Wine Red Wine Champagne/Sparkling Wine Dessert Wine
Asiago Soave Merlot Champagne Port, Madeira
Baby Swiss Pinot Blanc   Asti Spumante  
Blue Brie   Cotes-du-Rhone   Port
Blue Cheddar   Merlot   Tawny Port, Sherry
Blue Cheese Sancerre Zinfandel, Bordeaux   Madeira, Tawny Port
Blue Triple Cream Chardonnay     Tawny Port
Brie Pinot Gris Gamay Beaujolais Champagne Sweet Sherry
Camembert Sauvignon Blanc Cabernet Sauvignon    
Cheddar (Mild) Gruner Veltliner Gamay Beaujolais, Syrah    
Cheddar (Medium) Chardonnay Merlot Champagne Port
Cheddar (Sharp) Pouilly Fuisse Syrah, Cabernet Sauvignon   Tawny Port
Chevre (Aged Goat Cheese)   Merlot    
Chevre (Fresh Goat Cheese) Vouvray, Chenin Blanc, Sancerre Pinot Noir    
Chevre (Ripening Goat Cheese) Riesling, Chardonnay, Riesling      
Colby Riesling Pinot Noir Champagne  
Comte   Merlot, Pinot Noir, Cabernet Sauvignon    
Cotija Chardonnay, Riesling      
Cream Cheese Riesling, White Zinfandel Cabernet Sauvignon    
Crème Fraiche       Muscat, Port
Feta Sancerre, Sauvignon Blanc Gamay Beaujolais Champagne  
Gorgonzola Gewurztraminer Merlot Moscato d’Asti Tawny Port
Gouda (Aged)   Cabernet Sauvignon, Pinot Noir    
Gouda (Smoked)   Merlot, Pinot Noir    
Gouda (Young) Riesling Gamay Beaujolais    
Gruyere Sancerre Merlot Champagne Tokaji, Port
Havarti Chenin Blanc Tempranillo, Bordeaux    
Limburger   Blaufrankisch    
Manchego   Rioja, Tempranillo, Syrah    
Morbier Pinot Gris Dry Rose    
Mozzarella Pinot Gris Dry Rose, Chianti    
Muenster Gewurztraminer, Pinot Gris Zinfandel    
Myzithra   Merlot, Meritage    
Parmesan Chardonnay, Riesling, Sancerre Merlot, Pinot Noir, Syrah Lambrusco Port, Madeira, Sauternes
Pecorino Romano Gewurztraminer Merlot, Zinfandel    
Provolone Chardonnay Sangiovese, Barolo, Syrah    
Raclette Riesling Gamay Beaujolais    
Romano   Merlot, Bordeaux    
Roquefort Sancerre Bordeaux   Tawny Port, Sherry
Swiss (Mild) Riesling Gamay Beaujolais    
Swiss (Robust) Pinot Gris Chateauneuf-du-Pape, Zinfandel   Port, Madeira
Triple Cream Vouvray Bordeaux Champagne, Blanc de Blanc  

For more pairings and other information regarding cheese, please visit my blog at cheesemonger .

©Copyright 2009 Marcella Wright and Echoes from the CheeseMines  – Used by Permission


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