Certain pairings in life indicate that the world is a good place: peanut butter and jam, chocolate syrup and ice cream, wine and cheese. The separate ingredients enhance one another: each tastes better together than it would on its own.
That’s why I’ve created The Ultimate Guide to Wine and Cheese Pairing, pulling together all of resources on the site, including articles, videos, recipes, wine reviews, wine matcher tool, mobile apps and social media competition.
Our passionate community of wine lovers has always been about more than just wine alone: we’re all about enjoying wine with food and friends, entertaining and enjoying wine with all of the other good things in life, especially great cheeses.
The good news is that wine and cheese can be enjoyed with little preparation. The combination is perfect for any event, from informal picnics and snacks to cocktail soirées and dinner parties. For people like me, who don’t consider themselves a genius in the kitchen, it’s a relief to host gatherings without turning on the stove.
Wine and cheese seem to be a match made in gastronomic heaven for many reasons. Both are made from fresh liquids—grape juice and milk respectively—that are preserved and fermented by a natural agent: yeast for wine and bacteria for cheese.
Both are the result of controlled decomposition—not an appetizing notion, and yet one that yields a range of enticing, delicious flavors. They also both tend to get more complex with time, although some, such as beaujolais nouveau and goat’s cheese, are best consumed fresh.
Another thing wine and cheese share is a staggering range of styles. That’s why many of us find their choice and complexity intimidating. Many have strong personalities, with bold tastes and dominating characters, but others are mild and buttery, sometimes peppery or fruity. So how do you go about matching the two?
There are no hard and fast rules when it comes to matching wine and cheese. The only real caveat is to drink your most delicate white wines and your finest, most complex reds either on their own or with foods that are kinder to them.
The fun is in trying different pairings, especially nontraditional ones. I discovered one evening that riesling is brilliant with grilled-cheese sandwiches, which is really just fondue with larger pieces of bread.