The art of wine and cheese pairing

Be the hostess with the mostest by knowing exactly what types of cheese to pair with which wine at your next soiree.

Food + Drink Cooking and Entertaining Brian Webb

This article was published on March 17th, 2018

Entertaining can be a lot of fun, but it isn’t always easy. Throwing a great party means balancing a fine act of showing off to your friends while playing the role of gracious welcoming party host. The most important ingredients to a successful bash are always alcohol and food. But what if you have no idea which food to serve? Which wine goes best with what without being (too) cheesy? You don’t need a large spread—just some fromage and some vino will suffice. Be the hostess with the mostest by knowing exactly what types of cheese to pair with which wine at your next soiree!

The art of wine and cheese pairing

White wines:

Chardonnay: You’ll need a full-bodied cheese to go along with this full-bodied white wine. Try brie, gruyere, epoisses, or other triple-cream cheeses

Sauvignon Blanc: Sauvie pairs best with goat cheeses, and you can pair the likes of chevre, morbier, and crottin.

Pinot Grigio: Pinot Grigio is best matched with lighter cheeses like feta, fontina, ricotta, and crème fraiche.

Riesling: You’ll want a thick, sharp wine to coincide with this sweet German table wine, like havarti, emmantaler, comte, or raclette.

Rosé: Especially with dry rosé, you’ll want to place thicker cheeses with this wine, such as havarti, mozzarella, provolone, ricotta, and fontina.

Champagne: Add some bubbles to any dinner party to make it more of a celebration, and pair your sparkling wine with cheeses like brie or Delice de Bourgogne.

Moscato/Prosecco: Unlike other sparkling wines, you’ll want to pair these sweeter bubbly beverages with some gorgonzola or muenster to help balance out your palate.

Red wines:

Cabernet Sauvignon: Everyone’s favorite table red wine should be paired with aged cow cheeses like gouda and cheddar.

Merlot: Merlot is an old standard that can be best placed alongside other old standards like gouda, brie, or feta.

Pinot Noir: Your best bet with pinot of the noir variety is to stick with nutty-flavored cow cheeses like comté or gruyere.

Syrah: Soft ripened cheeses pair best with Syraz/Syrah (same wine, just named differently in different regions), such as edam and gouda.

Malbec: Use some fancier cheeses to go alongside this fancy red wine. Choose tome, gouda, edam, or Abbaye de Belloc for something really exquisite.

Red zinfandel: red zin is great with smoky tasting and grilling cheeses. Try combining zinfandel with halloumi or pecorino.

Garnacha: Semi-hard and sharp cheeses are the way to go when paired with garnacha. Match this full-bodied red wine with manchego or Ossau-Iraty.

The art of wine and cheese pairing

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Whether it’s a bacchanalian bash or a simple get together with fiend, you now know the art of wine and cheese pairing to have the ultimate gathering.

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