sabato 11 ottobre 2014

Cheese and wine pairing!

Cheese is the best invention man has ever made. And wine too. So the best thing in life, after the first one that everybody knows, ;), is pairing cheese with wine. I am not going to be boring but I want to summarize the main tips that will make your life wonderful.
With soft cheese characterized by a delicate milk aroma you should go for a fresh white wine like a young Chardonnay or, why not, some bubbles with a shy personality, like a Prosecco?
"Caprini"are cheeses made mainly from goat milk (there are in commerce also some from cow milk) with a stronger flavor. Many times they are conserved in oil with aromatic herbs or spices which makes them quite persistent in terms of taste and demanding in terms of wine. So, if you go for a white, be sure it's enough silky and perfumed. A barrique resting period would be welcome, otherwise, if at home you just have a red wine, be sure it has a medium structure. For my personal taste I prefer white wine combination, like a Verdicchio from Matelica!

Another category of cheese is the one with "washed crust". They are seasoned products (Taleggio and Robiola are an example) whose surface is washed with saulty water to avoid the mould and allowing the growing of batteria of red colour, which produce aromatic aromas reminding fermented fruit, sometimes very intense. I definetly love this type of cheese, I confess...technically speaking they need a strong wine to cope with their strong personality, but mellow enough to balance the  fatness and sweetness notes of the cheese. In this hard circumstances I love a Gewurztraminer from Alto Adige region. It's almost a dream!
The real dream and the most playful pairing come with seasoned cheeses. Playful because you can stretch the pairing from red wines with a really good structure, like a Barbera from Piemonte, up to sparkling wine made with champenois method, like a Franciacorta Brut. Let imagine yourself picking some bites of Parmesan or Grana cheese (for the difference between the two read my post parmigiano-reggiano-or-grana-padano) with a glass of sparkling wine, cleaning perfectly your mouth from the saulty and delicate fatness sensations left from the cheese swallowing....would you ask something more from life?:)

The problem of cheese are two: you are never tired of eating them (from starter to dessert) and you are never tired to pair them with wine because the variety of pairings is endless, depending on the cheese you choose or on the wine you have in your canteen. That actually wouldn't be a problem if in life calories were not existing! Who invented them!!? In any case when it comes to dessert forget about them, especially if your sweet treat will consist of "erborinati" cheeses with some jams and honey. A Passito wine is the perfect  pairing in my opinion. You can also dare with a fortified wine. As an example a Passito from Pantelleria, a Vin Santo from Tuscany or a Sauternes if you are in France.
But...Which is my favourite cheese? Definetly the Castelmagno, a paradise for senses, strong but at the same time elegant, the king of cheeses (il-re-dei-formaggi)!

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