Wine & Cheese match ups!
We all love pairing our favourite wines with cheeses so here’s Wine Park’s simple yet master ‘cheesy’ pairing guide that will illuminate your path to delicious wine and cheese pairings!
Wine and Cheese is one of history’s oldest culinary matches as both found plenty mentions in the Bible and have a lot in common. Both products rely on the soil one way or another and in Europe especially, cheese like wine is an edible expression of the region’s terroir. And as with wine, there are several cheese varieties. Over the course of human history, people discovered and appreciated how the dairy product complimented the ferment and vice versa. Sure enough, modern era science confirmed what we already knew – that cheese and wine enhance each other. Deeper research revealed that when wine is consumed by itself, it tastes bitter on the back of the tongue but when coated with cheese, the bitterness is absorbed, accentuating the wine’s fruity notes.
And while the penchant for pairing wine and cheese may have had its beginnings in Europe, the gourmet coupling is today a popular international trend. In fact, wine and cheese for marketers of both craft commodities, is an indispensible tool to promote and move product. Indians wine drinkers have especially taken a liking to this culinary experience and many of them have been engaging us in conversations about it. So we thought it would a great idea to suggest some pointers on how best to pair wine and cheese. We also matched some of the best selling cheeses in India with red, white and sparkling wines, just for you!
Balance is Key: Balance is vital when matching wine with cheese so always pair cheese and wines of similar weight. So light and soft cheeses are ideal to taste with white wines while for red wines, opt for some aged and intense cheeses of sharp flavour.
Cutting the Salt: Indians love salty cheese so it’s important to select a wine that’s got a good amount of acidity to match the saltiness and enhance the flavour of both the wine and cheese. So always choose tart wines to pair with sharp cheeses and similarly, rounder wines with cheeses with delicate flavours.
Matching Regions: There was an earlier mention of the fact that both cheese and wine are a reflection of their terroir so it naturally follows that wines and cheeses from the same country or specific region will pair well. While this theory is by no means informed by exact science, this approach has yielded great results so why not, right?
Sparkling wines, especially Champagne, pair splendidly with soft and creamy cheeses as the bubbly’s crisp acidity cuts nicely through the fat and soft texture of this creamy cheese compliments the crisp acidity. Here’s our pairing suggestions for three of the world’s most famous bubblies:
Champagne with Brie
Cava with goat cheese
Prosecco with Mozzarella
Now unlike reds, white wines don’t contain tannins and that’s an advantage that significantly opens up the field of pairing choices. More so, the white wines’ refreshing acidity slices through the cheese’s fat content so it doesn’t become cloying but instead creates a range of pleasing flavours on the palate. The matching possibilities here are several and we’ve narrowed it down for our most popular whites as best we can:
Chardonnay with Camembert
Sauvignon Blanc with Feta
Pinot Grigio with Ricotta
Riesling with Gouda
For a long time, it was widely believed that it is difficult
to pair red wines with cheese because their weight and tannin would just
overwhelm any cheese. Well that’s just not true as may successful experiments
will attest and while tannins do pose a challenge, we’ve listed some reliable
pairings for some of the world’s most popular reds:
Cabernet Sauvignon with Parmesan
Pinot Noir with Comte
Shiraz with Edam
Sangiovese with Pecorino
Malbec with Taleggio
Indians dig Wine and Fondue!
It’s a pleasant and perhaps sumptuous surprise that Indians have really taken to fondue, that most delicious, wintry comfort food. Indians love to eat together so then again may be not so surprising that they love dipping bread-edged sticks into a large pot of melted cheese, ‘fondueing’ well into the wee hours.
The most popular cheese used for making fondue is Gruyère, Emmental or Raclette. The Riesling is a great go to wine for fondues as it’s floral notes and sprightly acidity matches well with the fondue’s texture and cuts through its richness to create a soft mélange of flavours. New world Sauvignon Blanc from Australia and New Zealand is also a good accompaniment.