Cheese, when paired with a beautiful bottle of wine, is the ultimate finish to a long meal.
I love to end my meal with a nice piece of cheese which should perfectly complement my wine. In fact, it doesn’t even have to be a dessert wine. It can be any type of wine – as long as it pairs well with the cheese.
It’s a bit of a challenge to get the right match, but once you understand the rules, it is rather simple. We paired up with the wonderful Basilico in the Regent Hotel to discover the best cheese and wine pairing. Basilico offers a cheese night every Wednesday where they have more than 40 different cheeses.
This varies from fresh cheeses to strong and firm ones, some are house infused and all have a great story. We picked 3 different cheeses to explain everything about which wines and cheeses pair well. Basilico also offers a Formaggio e Vino every last Wednesday of the month (April, June, August, October and December)
Flavor: Semi hard / mild & delicate.
The milk used for this cheese is only from the spring period (Primavera). Hence you have a very fresh, sweeter and aromatic taste. Whenever you have a cheese that is fresh and aromatic you want a wine to match that.
Remember that we always try to either complement or contradict. This wine will go perfect with an aromatic and fresh Soave or Pinot Grigio!
Flavor: Strong & Pungent.
This cheese is infused in-house, by Basilico’s culinary team – led by Angelo Ciccone and Luca Beccalli. They infused the cheese with the sharp kick of dark Valhona chocolate and the warmth of red chillies.
Such an interesting combination. Whenever you have a cheese that is quite strong on flavor like a Gorgonzola, I tend to go to either heavy full bodied reds or dessert wines. Think about ripe Cabernet Sauvignons high on alcohol. This one would go great with a Ricotta della Amarone dessert wine. Those strong pungent flavours with sweet and aromatic nutty notes on the wine. Super!
Flavor. Strong & Hard.
This cheese is soaked for about 2 months in Prosecco wine and then aged for 6 months. The cheese absorbs the flavour of the wine: flowers and fruits. This goes so well with the salted notes of the cheese.
I wouldn’t dare to pair this with something else than Prosecco, as its all about complementing or contradict. So we play it safe with a glass of good Prosecco!
About Daan Suijlen
Dutch expat Daan is a passionate home chef and certified sommelier. At the age of 5, he preferred to be in the kitchen watching his grandma cook – and that passion has never left him! Having studied wine following WSET, he now loves to combine the best of both worlds: amazing food with great wines. Follow him at Instagram under @wineandcooking.
By Daan Suijlen, 4 April, 2019
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