Mismatch intensity and flavors.
This tip is the most important takeaway for creating your own pairings. “The pairing rule of “like with like” rings true when pairing wine and cheese,” says Werlin. As a general rule wines over 14.5% ABV are more intense and taste better with more intensely flavored cheeses, while wines under 12% ABV are less intense and match nicely with more delicately flavored cheeses. She says, “in general, white wines pair best with lighter, milder cheeses. This allows the fresh, often fruity notes of the white wine to enhance the sweet creaminess of the cheese. Werlin suggests pairing most cheeses with white wines. An unoaked Chardonnay pairs well with an alpine->asiago or parmesan, and Sauvignon Blanc with cheddar or gouda.”
Play it safe:
Though it may seem complicated at first, once you learn a few tips and tricks, you’ll be a wine and cheese connoisseur in no time. According to Werlin, pairing wine and cheese is “all about finding new flavor combinations and having fun.” Cheese should take you on an adventure of taste and texture. Get out of your comfort zone by trying something unique like Roelli’s Red Rock, a bright orange Cheddar Blue combination. Bubbles are very forgiving, so a sparkling wine is always a good choice for cheese wildcards. Want another unique idea? Grab some bubbly and pair it with a blue cheese for an unexpected dessert pairing after dinner. The crisp carbonation of the sparkling wine will cut the creaminess of the bold, blue cheese.
So, here are a few of mine:
Champagne with any cheese except “smoked”
Cabernet with manchego
Dry riesling with brie
Chardonnay with havarti
Pinot noir with gouda
You must have some favorites too.