A classic wine and cheese pairing can elevate your dining experience and leave you with a memorable taste in your mouth. When pairing wine with cheese, sometimes it’s hard to know where to start. One of the most versatile wines for pairing with cheese is sparkling wine. With its effervescence and crisp acidity, sparkling wine can complement the richness of cheeses. The bubbles in sparkling wine help to lift the cheese flavour off your palate, allowing you to enjoy each taste. Depending on the type of cheese you pair with sparkling wine, certain varieties will dance gracefully together on your taste buds, and others will seem to clash. This article will explore the classic sparkling wine and cheese pairing. You can mix and match the pairings to your preference. You’ll notice some pairings repeat, so you can easily mix and match them for your next party. This guide will help you create the perfect cheese and wine pairing for your next get-together.
Are you looking for the perfect match?
When pairing cheeses with wine, it’s essential to consider the texture, flavour intensity, and acidity of both to find the perfect balance. A good rule of thumb is to aim for complementary flavours and aromas rather than overpowering or contrasting ones.
Drinking sparkling wine with cheese is a great combination. Its carbonation helps break down the coating of butterfat cheese leaves on the palate, reducing clashes and leaving a clean taste in the mouth. Sparkling wine goes well with most types of cheese, whether fresh or aged, mild or spicy. People say that sparkling wine is best with fatty and creamy cheese because the acidity in the wine helps to balance the dense texture of the cheese.
Sparkling White Wines
Sparkling white wines are best served chilled between 4°-10C/40-50°F.
This temperature range helps preserve the wine’s effervescence and freshness while limiting its sweetness.
Remember to avoid storing your sparkling white wine in overly warm or humid areas and to prevent shaking or agitating the bottle before opening, as it can cause the wine to become too foamy.
Cheese can taste good with sparkling white wine. Here are some popular cheeses that can go well with the wine. Fresh Mozzarella has a refreshing taste that goes well with the wine. Gouda has a mellow and sweet flavour that matches nicely with the fruitiness of the wine. Fresh Chèvre (goat) has a tangy and acidic taste that contrasts with the bubbly and sour taste of the wine. Parmigiano-Reggiano has a nutty flavour that makes the wine taste rich and nice. Triple Cream Brie Cheese has a creamy texture that balances the wine’s sour taste and tastes luxurious.
The ideal temperature to serve cava is between 8-10°C/46-50°F. This temperature range helps to release refreshing and crisp flavours while preventing excessive alcohol content. To fully appreciate the unique flavours and aromas of cava, serving it at the right temperature is recommended.
For those who want to avoid guesswork or temperature-checking, store cava in a refrigerator between 4-7°C/40-45°F and allow it to sit out for a few minutes before serving.
There are several delicious options to consider regarding a cava cheese pairing. Cava pairs well with various cheeses due to its crisp and refreshing nature. One classic pairing is cava with Manchego cheese, a firm and nutty sheep’s milk cheese from Spain. The creamy texture and slightly salty flavour of the Manchego complement the effervescence and acidity of the cava beautifully. Another great pairing is cava with semi-soft cheeses like Brie or Camembert. These cheeses’ creamy, buttery texture enhances the cava’s delicate bubbles and fruity notes. It also matches well with soft and creamy Fresh Chèvre (goat). Look for other tasty cheese combinations that go well with Sparkling White Wines.
Champagne / Rosé Champagne
The optimal serving temperature for champagne is around 7-10°C/45-50°F.
The serving temperature of champagne is a crucial factor that can enhance or detract from the overall enjoyment of the wine. This temperature allows for the delicate aromas and flavours of the champagne to be fully expressed while ensuring the bubbles are lively and refreshing.
The bubbly exuberance of Champagne complements just about any cheese.
When pairing cheese with Champagne, a few options go well together. Cheese like Brie or Camembert is creamy and velvety, making it perfect to go with Champagne. Similarly, Fresh Chèvre (goat) cheese can create an interesting contrast with the bubbles and crispness of Champagne due to its tangy and acidic taste. Gruyère’s nutty and slightly sweet flavour matches the toasty and biscuity notes often found in Champagne, giving it a lovely complexity. Lastly, Roquefort or other blue cheeses‘ rich and intense flavours contrast beautifully with Champagne. The saltiness and creaminess of the cheese create a great contrast with the bubbles in Champagne. Look for other tasty cheese combinations that go well with Sparkling White Wines.
The ideal serving temperature for Crémant is between 7-9°C/44-48°F. This temperature range helps preserve the wine’s delicate flavours and aromas while providing a refreshing and crisp drinking experience.
You have many options if you want to pair cheese with Crémant. Each of these cheeses can bring out different flavours and characteristics of Crémant. For example, Comté, a nutty and slightly sweet French cheese, enhances the crisp and fruity notes. At the same time, a creamy and delicate Camembert creates a contrast of textures. The tangy and acidic Chevre creates a zesty and vibrant taste. Gruyère has a nutty and sweet taste, and Swiss Emmental has a mild and nutty flavour, allowing the delicate nuances of the wine to shine through because of its subtle taste. Look for other tasty cheese combinations that go well with Sparkling White Wines.
The ideal serving temperature for Prosecco is between 4-7°C/40-45°F. This ensures that the wine retains its crispness and effervescence.
Prosecco pairs with soft cheeses such as Fontina, Fresh Mozzarella, and Ricotta, including the cheeses soaked in the Prosecco wine, like Ubriaco. Prosecco is also Asiago and Parmesan/Parmigiano classic Pairing, the bubbles in Prosecco cut through the saltiness of those hard cheeses. Plus, they’re all Italian!
A sparkling rosé should be served chilled, ideally between 7-10°C/45-50°F.
This temperature range ensures that the wine maintains its effervescence and freshness while allowing its aromatic and flavour profile to shine through.
There are lots of cheeses that go well with sparkling rosé wines. Cheddar is a good choice because its strong flavour matches the fruity taste of the wine. Gorgonzola is a creamy and robust blue cheese that contrasts nicely with the bubbles in the wine. Provolone has a mild and slightly sweet taste that goes well with the floral notes in these wines. Manchego, a Spanish cheese, tastes nutty and savoury and pairs well with the complexity of sparkling red or rosé wines. Finally, Chèvre goat cheese is tangy and acidic, which goes well with these wines’ lively and refreshing taste.
Sekt is best served chilled between 6-8°C/42-46°F. Serving it at the ideal temperature ensures the wine remains crisp and refreshing while enhancing its flavour and aroma.
When pairing sweet sparkling wine with cheese, several options can complement each other perfectly. A classic pairing could involve a creamy, slightly salty cheese like Brie or Camembert. The richness of these cheeses pairs well with the crispness of sekt, creating a smooth and delightful combination. Another option is a tangy and aged cheese such as Parmesan or Gouda. These cheeses have a more robust flavour profile that can stand up to the sekt’s effervescence while adding an interesting contrast. Overall, the key is to find a cheese that balances the acidity and sweetness of the sekt while enhancing its flavours.
Sparkling red wines are often served chilled, around 7-10°C/46-50°F, to help balance the carbonation and fruit flavours of the wine.
Some cheeses that pair well with sparkling red wine include creamy Brie or Camembert, semi-hard cheeses like Gouda or Cheddar, and bold blue cheeses like Roquefort or Gorgonzola. The effervescence in sparkling red wine helps cut through the cheese’s creaminess, creating a balanced and delicious taste.
While Lambrusco serving temperature can vary depending on personal preference, it is generally recommended to serve it at a temperature of around 8-10°C/46-50°F.
This allows the wine to retain its crispness and acidity while showcasing its fruity flavours.
Lambrusco is a sparkling red wine with a slightly sweet and fruity taste. When pairing cheeses with Lambrusco, there are a few options to consider. One classic pairing is to pair Lambrusco with Parmigiano-Reggiano or Grana Padano. The rich, nutty flavours of these hard cheeses complement the fruitiness of the wine nicely. Another option is to pair Lambrusco with a creamy, mild cheese like Fontina. This cheese’s soft and delicate flavours won’t overpower the wine and will create a pleasant combination. Pair Lambrusco with a bold and tangy blue cheese like Gorgonzola if you prefer something more intense. The strong flavours of the blue cheese can provide an interesting contrast to the sweetness of the wine.
The best cheese pairing will depend on your personal preferences.
Feel free to explore and experiment to find the combination you enjoy the most.
One easy rule of thumb if you don’t find what you’re looking for here:
Pairing wine with cheese from the same region is usually a fair bet.
These tips are from my own experience;
I’m neither a party organizer, a sommelier, nor a turophile (a cheese connoisseur).
I just love cheese, wine and spending time with family and friends.
I hope my easy tips will give you the confidence to host a wine and cheese party with a handful of close friends.
If you use my tips for your next Wine & Cheese party, please comment below and remember to take a picture, tag @Fast2eat.com and use #Fast2eat so that we can both marvel at how easy it was!
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