Wine and cheese are an incomparable pair. Each preserves and perpetuates its source — grapes in wine, milk in cheese. Each comes in countless varieties. And each helps the other to show its best. Cheese smoothes wine and highlights its best character, while wine enhances cheese and accents its flavors. But as in all matches, there’s still the matter of compatibility.
Brie, Camembert and other satiny, soft-ripened cheeses, for example, call for regal reds – Cabernet Sauvignon, Bordeaux, velvety Merlot, a Syrahbased Rhône. Or consider a nutty Oloroso Sherry.
Semi-soft cheeses, which include Port Salut, Pont l’Eveque and Canadian Oka, match well to both red and white. Chianti Classico and Oregon Pinot Noir are good red choices. For whites, I’d suggest a not overly oaked California Chardonnay.
Goat cheese is tart and zesty, a natural with dry, light, fruity wines. The Loire Valley’s Cabernet Franc-based reds, Beaujolais Villages and Italy’s Bardolino are companionable choices.
The mild-flavored buttery cheeses — Edam and Gouda of Holland, Taleggio and Bel Paese of Italy, Monterey Jack from California — do nicely with medium-bodied wines: Pinot Noir, Cru Beaujolais, even a dry rosé from Spain’s Navarra region.
With their distinctive marbling and tangy flavor, Blue cheeses call for assertive red wines: Zinfandel from California, Shiraz from Australia, Barolo from Italy, Ribera del Duero from Spain, Chateauneuf-du-Pape from France.
Cheddars — the great cheese of Great Britain and its American cousin — taste best with a fine Cabernet Sauvignon-based wine, a Côte Rotie or, if they are aged and truly sharp, Port or Amontillado Sherry.
Swiss is the best known of the lightly nutty-flavored semi-hard cheeses. Enjoy it with Spain’s Rioja, Italy’s Valtellina or one of Switzerland’s own — Pinot Noir-based Dôle, for instance.
The king of hard cheeses is the sharp, richly flavored Parmigiano. And it calls for one of Italy’s glorious reds — Brunello, Barolo, Gattinara, Amarone, or Vino Nobile de Montelpulciano.
Then there are cheeses — Limburger and Livarot come to mind — whose strong aromas announce their presence. These powerful cheeses demand powerful wines. Look to Portugal’s Dão and Douro reds, Spain’s Toro, France’s Cahors, South Africa’s Pinotage.
Enjoy — to the last bite of cheese, the last delicious drop of wine.
Read This Next
Park Hyatt Washington
2008Dec 10, 2012
All Reads on This Topic
Read Them All
FX Excursions offers the chance for once-in-a-lifetime experiences in destinations around the world.
Diego Rivera’s America Presents the Most In-Depth Look at Artist’s Work in More than 20 Years
Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art, located in Bentonville, Arkansas, presents Diego Rivera’s America, the first major exhibition focused solely on the Mexican artist in more than 20 years, on view until July 31. Crystal Bridges is the second and final stop for the exhibition, the only remaining opportunity for visitors to experience Rivera's expansive vision of America.
Business or Leisure? With TAP Air Portugal, You Can Have Both!
Are you looking to enhance your business trip with a little leisure? Look no further than Portugal, a country renowned for its captivating blend of history, culture and natural beauty. And with TAP Air Portugal, you can effortlessly transform your business trip into an unforgettable bleisure adventure. Discover why Portugal and TAP Air Portugal are the perfect combination for an enriching and rejuvenating experience.
San Antonio, Texas, Preserves Architectural Beauty for Future Generations
In San Antonio, Texas, old buildings are seldom destroyed. When they fall into disrepair, they are instead repurposed and restored to maintain the city’s history and traditions for future generations to appreciate. Whether it’s a former brewery or bank transforming into a chic hotel or a candy factory evolving into stylish lofts, this Texas city embraces both history and sustainability.
Here’s How to Arrive in Style to the World’s Most Unforgettable Hotels
Make a grand entrance to these equally grand hotels:
Europe is more fun with a Portugal Stopover.
SponsoredJun 1, 2023
Protected: MORE TO TRAVEL
There’s more to travel than just getting there.
Protected: MORE TO TRAVEL
SponsoredJun 1, 2023
Park Hyatt Tokyo Prepares for Its New Look
London Concours Displays Golden Age Coupes
DailyMay 31, 2023
Pick These Resorts and Destinations for a Day of Self Care on Global Wellness Day
Celebrate Global Wellness Day on June 10 with a visit to one of these resorts or destinations.
What Business Travel Looks Like Now From Those Who Know It Best
Pack your bags, traveling for business is making a comeback — and the role of the corporate travel manager is more important than ever.
eFlyer ReviewsMay 31, 2023
Homer and Janet by Homer Review
The Marais District, covering swaths of Paris’ 3rd and 4th arrondissments, has a distinctively gritty glamour that reveals it to be one of the city’s great incubators for new French food, fashion and lifestyle trends. It is here Moïse Sfez took on the challenge of creating street food establishments Homer in 2017 and Janet by Homer in 2022, doing it in such a way they both transcend the novelty of being regional American comfort food offered at stylized lunch counters matching up with New England lobster shacks and New York delis. Overwhelming local response and Sfez winning the 2018 Lobster Roll World’s Championship title in Portland, Maine, solidified him as a Paris restaurateur and one of France’s hottest culinary stars.