Looking for the perfect match? A good wine and a good cheese can enhance the flavours and complexities of each other. Select a wine that complements the flavours in your favourite cheese.
If you have a special bottle, pick a cheese to match.
Don’t know which cheese to buy?
You can bet there’s a wine out there for every cheese. In general, white wine tends to work better with cheese, as the high acidity of the wine breaks down the fat. However, there are red wines that can work well with mature cheeses.
You’ll notice some pairings repeat so you can mix and match with ease for your next party.
There are numerous studies finding the strong flavour of cheese accentuates the dominant flavours in wine. Interestingly, researches show your wine palate becomes more sensitive when combining cheese and wine so you will be able to detect more lovely flavours in the wine.
But in order to get this heightened taste sensation, you need to pair the two right.
Here is my guide to pairing the perfect cheese with your delicious wine with the most popular wines and cheeses pairings!
- Off-Dry Wines pair well with Spicy Cheeses
- Light Bodied Wines pair well with Light Cheeses
- Full Bodied Wines pair well with Heavier Cheeses
Store open 5–7 days* (store in fridge)
Whites are generally considered a better company for a wide range of cheeses. Due to their natural qualities, white wines almost never can overpower cheese odour and taste, but complement them harmoniously. White Wine pair well with Young, Creamy Cheeses.
Light Bodied Refreshing White Wine
Light-bodied, easy-drinking dry white wines may not command high prices, but are some of the most-sold wines in the world (even if red wines get more attention.
Light whites have increased acidity and thus, pair with a wide array of cuisines. Aromas range from sweet¬er stone fruits to savoury, herby, and peppery flavours.
AKA: Johannisberger Riesling – Rhine Riesling – White Riesling – Riesling Renano (Italy)
Riesling’s taste gets richer with age, revealing citrus, apricot and peach notes. The wine shines well with hard Gouda or Edam and soft Cotija or Mascarpone cheeses.
Sweet, creamy Ricotta loves tangy Riesling. Try Ricotta with both the sweet and the dry variations of this German classic wine.
|Cool-weather, dry, Old World||light||high||dry||low|
|Warm weather, dry, New World||medium||medium||dry, fruity||low|
|Off-dry||medium||perceived as medium||slightly sweet||low|
|Late harvest||full||perceived as low||sweet||low|
Sauvignon Blanc/Sauvignon Vert/Friulano/Sancerre
AKA: Bordeaux Blanc (some) – Fumé Blanc (California) – Friuliano/Friulano (Italy) – Jakot (Slovenia) – Pavillon Blanc (Bordeaux) – Pouilly Fumé and Sancerre (Loire Valley) – Saint-Bris (Burgundy near Chablis) – Sauvignon Gris – Sauvignonasse (Slovenia) – Sauvignon Vert – Tocai Friulano/Tocai Friulano (formerly) – Zeleni Sauvignon
Notes: Sauvignon Blanc is a dry white wine which possesses rich aromas and fresh tastes of herbs and fruits, harmoniously combined with delicate acidity and minerality.
Fresh Chèvre (goat cheese) and Sauvignon Blanc is a match made in heaven. The acidity and upfront fruity and grassy flavours with the citrusy aromatics present of the Sauvignon Blanc are the perfect foil for the sourness and dryness of the tangy Fresh Chèvre (goat cheese). We particularly recommend pairing Sauvignon Blanc with Fresh Chèvre (goat cheese) and it also works well with firmer French Fresh Chèvre (goat cheese) that has developed spicy flavours. The wine is perfectly highlighted by creamy bloomy-rind Fresh Chèvre (goat cheese).
But Sauvignon Blanc also pairs well with other cheeses.
The wine’s crispy and refreshing character is also perfectly highlighted by Brie De Meaux, Cambozola or Feta.
This bright and light-bodied dry wine with hints of citrus and grass is the rare wine that would not overpower the subtleties of Monterey Jack.
Sauvignon Blanc is also good with halloumi and cheeses with garlic and herbs, such as Boursin.
Monterey Jack is known for its subtleness and needs to be paired with a wine that won’t overwhelm it. Sauvignon Blanc is a light-bodied, dry and bright white wine that has citrus and grassy notes that complement the cheese.
|Cool Climate||light to medium||high and tangy||dry||low|
|Warm Climate||light to medium||high||slight fruity||low|
|Sauvignion Vert/Friulano||light to medium||high||slight fruity||low|
|Fumé Blanc||light to medium||medium to high||slight fruity and hint oak||low|
Full-Bodied White Wine
Full-bodied white wines are great wines for red wine lovers because of their rich smooth taste and subtle creamy notes.
What makes white wines so rich? Aging white wines in oak barrels causes several interactions to occur that increase body. So, be sure to look up the aging pro¬gram to ensure the wine has had some barrel aging (usually from 6–12 months.)
AKA: Burgundy Villages names – California – Pouilly-Fuisse – Blanc de Blanc (for many sparkling wines) – Morillon (Austria)
Notes:*White Burgundy is 100% Chardonnay from the Burgundy region of France and is one of the many styles of Chardonnay
Chardonnay is a dry, medium-bodied white wine with rich creamy and nutty flavour, sometimes with apple, pear or citrus hints, which makes it fruity and crisp.
It is one of the most versatile wines and matches well both hard and soft cheeses, varying from Gruyere and Cheddar to Brie and Camembert.
The crisp and fruity wine enhances the creaminess of milder cheeses making them almost sweet.
Creamy Camembert, Brie or other soft, surface ripened cheeses pair so much better with white wine. Chardonnay shines with these types of cheeses. The combination of rich texture and high acidity can make Chardonnay a good wine to enjoy with creamy cheeses, like Brie. The fruit of the wine will elevate the buttery, salty taste of the cheese.
Anything from a steely Burgundian Chablis to a unoaked or moderately oaked style works. And, preferably one from a cooler climate with bright acidity usually works. Think New Zealand, Sonoma Coast, Russian River Valley or Carneros. The more subtle flavours of Chardonnay allow the flavours of the cheese to shine and the acidity in the wine cuts through the creamy richness.
Pungent washed-rind cow’s cheeses will lose its stinky characteristics when paired with Chardonnay, but you can also opt for milder, traditional triple Cream cheese to avoid the smell.
Whether you choose to snack on Gruyère whole or melty, the fruit and nut flavours in Chardonnay are an ideal mate.
|Chablis style||light||high||dry, minerally||low|
|unoaked, warm climate||light to medium||medium||dry, fruity||low|
|lightly oaked cool climate
(white Burgundy style)
|lightly oaked warm climate||medium||medium||dry, fruity||medium|
|moderately oaked, warm climate||medium to full||low||dry, but creamy||medium|
AKA: Bonnezeaux – Cremant d’ Loire (sparkling) – Pineau – Pineau de la Loire – Pino Blanco (Latin America) – Quarts de Chaume –Savennieres – Steen (South Africa)- Vouvray*
Notes:*Vouvray is 100% Chenin Blanc from the Vouvray region of the Loire Valley in France.
Chenin Blanc is a versatile grape, capable of producing a wide range of wines, from fresh and fruity to oaked and sweet, and even a blend or a sparkling wine. And with its variety of expressions, there are many pairing possibilities.
Because of Chenin Blanc’s awesome acidity and inherently sweet flavour, you’ll find it pairs well with foods that have a sweet and sour element.
Soft to semi-firm cow’s milk cheeses, such as triple-cream Brie, Gruyère, Cream cheese, yogourt and cheddar work very well with light & dry Chenin Blanc. Also try with a Fresh Chèvre (goat cheese), herb-crusted goat cheeses, or even a barrel-aged Feta.
Avoid pungent cheeses as they will overpower the wine. Instead pair Chenin Blanc with soft cheeses like Brie, Fresh Mozzarella, and goats cheese.
|cool climate (Vouvray)||light to medium||high||dry to off-dry||medium|
|warm climate||medium||medium||dry, fruity||low|
|demi-sec||medium to full||perceived as low||sweet||low|
AKA: Clevner – Gewürtz – Heida – Heiden –Klavner – Mala Dinka – Rotclevner – Rusa – Traminac – Traminer– Tramini – Traminette
Notes: In the U.S., Traminette is actually a hybrid but so similar to Gewürtztraminer that it can essentially be considered the same.
The strong floral, spicy and fruitiness aromas of Gewürztraminer are just the foil for strong-smelling cheeses such as Munster, Livarot or Stinking Morbier or Bishop to balance the strong flavours of the cheese.
||Dry/ off-dry/ sweet:
||Dry/ off-dry/ sweet:
|dry||medium||medium||dry with a floral fruitiness||low|
|off-dry||medium||low||off-dry to semi-sweet||low|
AKA: Muscat – Moscato or Muscat Canelli (California) – Moscato di Asti (sparkling wine)– Asti or Fior d’Arancio (Italy) – Vin Doux Natural – Muscat de Beaumes-de- Venise (France) – Liquor di Muscat (Australia) – Muskateller (Germany) – Muscatel (Portugal) – Muscat Blanc – Muscat Canelli – Moscato Bianco – Muscat de Frontignan – Muscat de Lunel – Muscat d’Alsace – Muskateller – Moscatel de Grano Menudo
Moscatel Rosé and Sárgamuskotály Varieties: Muscat of Alexandria – Muscat Ottonel – Muscat Fleur d’Oranger
Notes: Light-bodied white wine with orange blossom and lemon zest notes, and aromatic flavours. Made from the Muscat grape, Moscato usually identifies the off-dry and sweet wine versions made from that grape. The wine has a playful sweetness that surprisingly blends well with spicier cheeses such as . Muenster and Pepper Jack.
A lightly fizzy and beautifully aromatic Moscato goes amazingly with blue cheese. The sweetness of the white wine balances the strong flavours of the moldy cheese.
Muscat is a sweet wine with lush fruitiness in its taste and a touch of honey. It pairs wonderfully with desserts and chocolate, fois gras and soufflés, as well as blue and cheddar cheeses.
|dry||medium||low||dry but flowery||low|
|off dry||medium||low||slightly sweet||low|
Pinot Grigio/Pinot Gris
AKA: Pinot Grigio (Italy) – Pinot Gris (France) – Tokay Pinot Gris – Pinot Beurot – Malvosie (France) – Grauer Burgunder (Germany) – Graüburgunder (Austria/Germany) – Malvosie (Switzerland) – Szürkebarat (Hungary)
Notes: Light-bodied, aromatic and fresh dry white wine that has refreshing pear and melon flavours with a fruity bouquet of scents and an acid zest.
With its higher acidity Pinot Grigio food pairing is quite diverse, including Thai and Chinese dishes. It works as a perfect palette cleanser for milder cheeses and is ideal for soft cheeses. The acidity of Pinot Grigio tangos well with Fresh Mozzarella (and other mild Italian cheeses, it is good with an antipasti platter), Fresh Chèvre (goat cheese), Ricotta and Fontina among them.
The more full-bodied Pinot Gris tends to go well with cheddar, Edam or Gouda.
|cool climate||medium||medium to high||dry||low|
|warm climate||medium||medium||dry to slightly fruity||low|
|ice wine||medium plus to full||perceived as low||semi-sweet to sweet||low|
AKA: Sémillon – Wyndruif (South Africa) – Hunter Valley Riesling (Australia) – Boal (Portugal) – Blanc Doux – Boal – Colombier – Goulon Blanc – Gros Semillon – Hunter River Riesling – Monsois Blanc – Petit Semmillon – Sauternes – Semijon – Semilion – Semillon Blanc – White Sercial, St. Emilion – Wynedruif
|Varietal Sémillon goes with:
||Late harvest Sauternes-type dessert wine goes with:
|as a varietal||medium||low||dry||low|
|late harvest (Sauternes)||full||low||sweet||low|
Pairing a wine with a cheese that comes from the same region is usually a fair bet.
Note: I get really excited about cheese and wine, so it’s difficult for me to be brief when there is so much wonderful information to share!
- A Complete Guide to Plan an Unforgettable Wine & Cheese Party
- The cheese
- ***Soft Cheese – Fresh – Cow’s milk cheese
- ***Soft Cheese – Fresh – Goat’s milk cheese
- ***Stretched Curd and Brined
- ***Soft and Brined
- ***Soft-ripened and Bloomy-rind – Cow’s milk cheese
- ***Soft Ripened and Bloomy-rind – Cow’s milk cheese – Double/Triple-crème cheeses
- ***Soft-ripened and Bloomy-rind – Goat’s milk cheese
- ***Semi-soft and Brined
- ***Semi-soft – Mild Cow’s milk cheese
- ***Semi-soft – Mild Sheep’s milk
- ***Semi-soft – Swiss or Swiss style
- ***Washed Rind (soft or semi-soft/Semi-hard Cheese/Medium-aged Cheeses)
- ***Aged – Cow’s milk cheese
- ***Hard – sheep’s milk cheese
- ***Hard – Grana
- ***Blue cheeses
- What to serve with the cheese and wine?
- Cheese and Wine Pairing
- ***Classic Cheese and Wine Pairing Chart
- ***Classic Wine and Cheese Pairing – Sparkling Wine
- ***Classic Wine and Cheese Pairing – White Wine
- ***Classic Wine and Cheese Pairing – White Wine
- ***Classic Wine and Cheese Pairing – Rosé Wine
- ***Classic Wine and Cheese Pairing – Red Wine
- ***Classic Wine and Cheese Pairing – Dessert Wine
- Non-alcoholic alternatives
- How much to buy?
- How to set the table?
- Chronogram & Preparation
***In Development, please keep checking.
Reference: Content and images based on information from: https://www.wikipedia.org/ https://cheese.com https://www.cookipedia.co.uk
https://culturecheesemag.com https://www.gourmetsleuth.com https://winefolly.com/ https://www.tasteatlas.com https://www.wine.com/ https://winemonger.com https://www.terroir-france.com/
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