Human Interest

The Vine Room Naples has this amazing cheese cart with all kinds of selections to pair with your wine

How to celebrate National Wine and Cheese Day today? Pour a glass and cut a slice, of course. It really CAN be that simple, however, picking the right grapes to pair with the right kind of cheese can make all the difference in the world.

Some cheeses are thick, heavy and coat your tongue, making a huge difference in taste when it comes to whatever you put in your mouth next.

Bubbly

Bubbles and brie are a good combo. A crisp wine, like ones that sparkle, are always good with fatty cheeses, salty ones too. I personally like sparkling with almost anything that comes on a plate. There are so many different styles you can really drink bubbles from the start to the finish of a meal.

Parmigiano-Reggiano

One of the most classic parings is a hard block of Parmigiano-Reggiano or Pecorino with Chianti. A little tip here, Chianti is made from the sangiovese grape so you can look for that name as well.

Goat Cheese

Try it with an herbal sauvignon blanc if you want a white. For red, look for a Rhone blend. Goat cheese is popular in the Rhone Valley of France.

When looking for wine and cheese pairings, look to the Europeans. Generally speaking, their cuisine is more regional meaning the wines they make in a particular area really do pair best with local food. Something we don’t do in the U.S. It really does make sense and is a great guide for some outstanding food and wine combos.

Stilton

Ooooooo there is nothing like a good port with a big, stinky stilton. Sweeter wines have a way with stinky cheese. Skip the chocolate next time and try this for a dessert duo.

Cabernet Sauvignon

You might want to skip it. Cab and cheese may seem iconic, but generally speaking cheese does not enhance the fruits and tannins that so many people enjoy in a good glass of cabernet. Jordan Winery in Sonoma has a great culinary program and they are known for their cabernet. Their team has some helpful guidelines.¬†When it comes to pairing the two, look for semi-hard aged cow’s milk and sheep’s milk cheeses. Blue cheeses are tricky.

If you want some good steering locally, try the cheese cart experience at The Vine Room in Naples. I popped in for some last week and it was outstanding. See from this video:

Beehive Cheese

Some of the many selections from Beehive Cheese

There are lots of great cheese brands if you don’t live in close proximity to a specialty store. In addition, many brands ship. I mean just look at all of the flavors of these from Beehive Cheese in Utah, yep Utah. They have won lots of awards and there is a reason whey. They’re darn good. Not pictured is the truffle. I couldn’t wait to open it. It was delicious!

For a more in depth look at perfect pairings, and how to celebrate National Wine and Cheese Day, check out this article I wrote for the Fort Myers NewsPress. Also, this one gives tips for creating the perfect cheese board. Who doesn’t like a good board? They really are easy to put together. The key is having a variety of quality ingredients.

Always make sure your wine is chilled properly, even the red. And also, drink responsibly.