One of life’s greatest pleasures derives from the act of swirling a glass of wine, taking in the aromas, observing the color, and detecting flavor profiles. But this spring, let’s take our wine drinking experience to the next level by adding one of life’s other guilty pleasures—cheese!
There is a ton of information out there on what cheese pairs well with different wine varieties. But here at SJ Mag, we’re making it even easier for you to pair your favorite local wine with some of our favorite cheeses. Trust us when we say you won’t be disappointed.
Albariño and Goat Cheese
Grab a bottle of Bokisch Vineyards Las Cerezas Albariño to start. This Spanish wine with bright acidity and hints of lemon zest will pair perfectly with the creamy, tangy quality of goat cheese. Feel free to add a little lemon zest or orange marmalade to accompany the cheese, but the albariño and goat cheese are righteous all on their own.
Chardonnay and Triple Cream Brie
Let’s begin this round with a local favorite, Harney Lane’s Home Ranch Chardonnay. It’s creamy, round on the palate, and has all the hallmark buttery goodness one would expect from an oaked chardonnay. It even has a baked apple element that begs for one of our favorite cheeses of all time—a triple cream brie. Want to splurge? Look for Mt. Tam. Triple Crème Brie.
Zinfandel and Pecorino Romano
We chose to uncork the Oak Farm Vineyards Zinfandel for this combination because of its exuberant youth, fruit forward flavors, and mild tannins. It pairs beautifully with cheeses that have nutty, sweet characteristics like a Pecorino Romano. The sharp finish of the cheese really balances out this Lodi zin.
Syrah and Aged Gouda
Reach for a bottle of Klinker Brick’s Farrah Syrah, a silky smooth dark garnet wine bursting with black raspberry and hints of toast. The fine tannin structure stands up perfectly to the nutty, salty, aged gouda. Be sure the cheese is aged at least 18 months, like the ones made by Old Amsterdam.
Cabernet Sauvignon and Fiscalini Bandaged Aged Cheddar
Cabernet is known for its big, bold flavors, and that’s why we opted for one of our favorite local wines, Mettler Cabernet Sauvignon. A robust wine like this begs for an aged cheddar. Because the water content decreases with age, the cheese develops more intense flavors. The high fat content from Fiscalini’s Bandaged Aged Cheddar will coat the inside of your mouth and counteract the higher tannins in the cabernet.