Guest Post: Unique Wine And Cheese Pairings To Try

Traditional Pairings

Step inside any cheese and wine bar and you will be quite often greeted with the same pairings: Merlot with Asiago, Chardonnay with White Cheddar, and Pinot Noir with Colby. While these traditional pairings work well to bring out the nuisances of your wine, it is fun to try pairing your favorite wine with an unexpected cheese. You may find that by trying your wine with a new cheese, it will bring out new flavors in your wine that you have not experienced before.

Spice Up Your Pairings

Take a cue from Texas and use spicy cheeses. While traditional Cheddar and Monterey Jack cheeses are used in Tex-Mex cooking, there are fun new cheeses. Habanero Cheddar and Pepper Jack cheeses are two cheeses that offer spice and bold flavor. Try it with two different types of wines. To kick it up a notch and blend spices, try a Red Zinfandel wine. This spicy wine will blend well with the cheese and enhance the zing. If you like something to help tone down hot spices in the cheese, reach for a bubbly. Champagne and other sparkling white wines will contrast with the spicy cheese, offering an unexpected sweet aftertaste.

Passport Pairings

Pick a country for the evening and choose regional cheese and wine to pair. Quite often the cheese and wine produced in the same country is intended to complement each other. More than likely this will be easy to find in a wine and cheese bar. Cheeses will be listed by country produced as well as the wine itself. Consider Brie and Banon cheese produced in France and pair with a French Merlot or Bordeaux. Baby Swiss cheese produced in the United States with a Napa Valley Chardonnay. By sticking to a specific region, you will find that the cheese and wine do not overpower each other.

Pair with Range

Hosting a wine and cheese party? Offer your guests cheese flights. Each flight of cheese should start from mild to hearty. Organize your cheese flights by style of cheese such as cheddars, blue cheeses, cream based cheeses, salty cheeses such as blue cheese, and dry cheeses such as Asiago. On each cheese flight post suggestions of wines such as white or red. This way your guests can sample chesses and find the one that they like best. Offer small notebooks for your guests to write their notes in and help them remember which pairing they enjoyed most, a great parting gift for your party.

About the author:

Ginger hails from California as a Blog owner andΒ  contributor for various Blogs, among others The Wine Cult.Β  She also likes to write about food and marketing topics.Β  She enjoys riding horses and surfing in her spare time.

27 comments on “Guest Post: Unique Wine And Cheese Pairings To Try”

  1. drinkforlife Reply

    Interesting pairings. I like the “passport pairings” idea. Never done it before but it sounds like a lot of fun.
    Venetian Merlot has often worked quite well with Asiago for me.

    • vino in love Reply

      I like Asiago cheese, too. And you are right that a good Merlot from the Veneto is an excellent pairing.
      I have often paired food with local wine. That’s the traditional way and it has proven many times to work best.

  2. RiojaChianti RiojaChianti Reply

    Great post. It’s a little bit shorter than I expected but still quite informative. I love cheese and wine but rarely have them both together. That calls for a change! Tonight I might do one of my first wine and cheese pairings. I’m already very excited!
    Thanks for sharing this guest post Julian πŸ˜‰

    • vino in love Reply

      RiojaChianti,
      Thanks for stopping by! This guest post is indeed a little bit shorter than last week’s one. I still found it to be quite interesting. Enjoy your first wine and cheese match tonight πŸ™‚ Maybe follow one of the pairing suggestions? Let me know if it worked well.

  3. Suzanne Reply

    I like the ideas, too often wine and cheese pairings are so predictable. Making it interesting and unexpected will make the event something to talk about. There are so many great cheeses and wines of course why not do something out of the norm. Great guest post, really enjoyed it and as always I learn so much from you.

    • vino in love Reply

      Suzanne,
      Thank you for your input on this.
      I believe that certain cheeses just call for specific wines. Parmigiano Reggiano for example pairs well with Amarone and Recioto. In my opinion one should try to match local cheese with local wine – that’s the traditional way and it works well (at least for me).
      But you are definitely right that going out of the norm is more exciting. Matching the same cheese with the same wine over and over again might be a little bit boring.

  4. wineking3 wineking3 Reply

    Great food pairing suggestions. Looking forward to try Habanero Cheddar with Zinfandel. I love the spiciness of both. What’s the topic of next week’s guest post? (If you know already). So far I enjoyed all of them a lot. So keep them coming πŸ™‚

    • vino in love Reply

      Wineking,
      Thanks for commenting. Only time I tried Habanero Cheddar was when I was living in Houston almost five years ago. It’s not very common here in Europe.
      The topic for next week’s guest post is “Wine Making in the USA: Idaho’s Ste. Chapelle Winery”
      I’m glad you’ve enjoyed the guest posts so far πŸ™‚

  5. hannah-theis hannah-theis Reply

    Really like this article. I’m not a big cheese eater. I think (red) wine pairs much better with meat and other dishes. Suzanne is right that most of these pairings are predictable but I don’t think that it’s necessarily a bad thing.

    • vino in love Reply

      Hannah,
      Thanks for stopping by! I guess if you don’t like cheese in general then it’s only natural that you prefer to pair wine with some other food πŸ™‚

  6. theducksong Reply

    what would you pair with swiss gruyere? any suggestions? it’s one of my favorite cheese but i’m not sure what goes best with it.

    • vino in love Reply

      With Gruyere I suggest either a Riesling (not the sweet wines though) because the Riesling brings out the Gruyere’s nutty character. If you are looking for a red wine recommendation then maybe Vino Nobile or Cinsault.

      • theducksong Reply

        Thanks for the suggestions, Julian.
        Riesling seems to be a very good match. I’ll go with that tonight.

        • the winegetter Reply

          I hate to disagree, Julian, but actually it is not a disagreement, more an extension of your suggestion: One of my favorite pairings for Gruyere (and we did that many, many times) is a sweet Riesling. It works amazingly. Make sure it is a Riesling that retains acidity to keep it bright and not overpower the delicate, nutty Gruyere flavors. But any Mosel Spaetlese will be great for that cheese.

          • theducksong

            i just had a markus molitor kabinett zetelinger sonnenuhr with gruyere and it worked very well πŸ™‚ the wine was not too sweet and had a perfect acidity.

          • theducksong

            the winegetter thanks for the suggestions.
            i have a dr. loosen wehlener sonnenuhr riesling kabinett which i think is sweeter than the markus molitor riesling. i’ll try that the next time i eat gruyere πŸ™‚

          • vino in love

            Theducksong,
            Glad to hear that my Riesling suggestion worked out for you! Let me know if the sweeter Dr. Loosen Wehlener Sonnenuhr pairs well with Gruyere, too.

          • the winegetter

            Glad the Molitor worked. Yes, the Wehlener Sonnenuhr will probably be sweeter, but it should also have enough acidity. It’s one of the things I hardly ever worry about when drinking good producer Mosel or Saar wines…

          • vino in love

            Oliver,
            It’s no problem that you disagree a little bit with me. You are the Riesling expert so I take your advice very serious πŸ™‚
            I’ve had good experiences with Gruyere and well-balanced Rieslings. So I was a little bit afraid that very sweet ones (like TBA or Eiswein) might dominate the cheese. But next time I’ll have a sweet Riesling in the fridge I’ll give this combination a try.

    • vino in love Reply

      Thank you Oliver πŸ™‚
      I’m glad that the guest bloggers were able to contribute good content so far. Way too many people want to guest post on Vino in Love so it’s sometimes quite a challenge to to decide what to publish want to trash. Do you think once a week is enough or should I publish them more frequently? I’m still undecided whether once a week is enough or not.

      • the winegetter Reply

        I’d stick with once a week, I think. It is your blog after all. I mean, it depends on how far you want to move Vino in Love into a broader community site, then maybe more is possible. But at this stage, I think people come to this site for your take on things and it is important that you stay visible as the content provider.

        It’s quite awesome that so many people want to guest blog for you! Shows what a great community you have built here.

  7. Sean P. Reply

    Really like these food & cheese matches. Will try a few soon. Maye I’ll buy a nice Chardonnay to pair with a Monterey Jack. Any suggestions for a good Chardonnay? I like the ones with oak.

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