Wine and cheese go together perfectly. There are several rules that will help you to find the right harmony between wines and cheeses. However, these rules are not strict: the taste and the pleasure of each person is the major factor in the choice of a wine-cheese combination.
We offer you some advice here, which you can complete and adapt to suit your tastes.
White wines and red wines
Cheese is often eaten with red wine. But white wine also goes very well with certain cheeses.
With dry white wines, whose acidity contrasts with the creaminess of the cheese, what we look for are alliances based on opposition (acid wine and mild cheese, for example).
With red wines, alliances based on analogy are what we usually want: the bitterness of the wine and the bitterness of certain cheeses, or sweet wine and mild cheese.
Finally, cider or champagne can also be combined with cheeses from their regions of origin (example: brie and champagne, or camembert and cider).
Cheeses made from cow's, goat's or sheep's milk
For cheeses made from cow's milk, the combinations are based on the following categories:
- With soft cheeses with a mould rind (Camembert, Brie or Coulommiers): full-bodied red wines (Bordeaux, Burgundy, etc.).
- With orange coloured soft cheeses with washed rinds (Munster e.g.): aromatic dry white wines (Gewurztraminer, etc.), or full-bodied red wines (Saint-Emilion, Châteauneuf-du-Pape, etc.).
- With soft cheeses that have a natural rind (e.g. Saint Marcellin): light and fruity red wines (Beaujolais, Côtes du Rhône, Val de Loire, etc.).
- With cooked hard cheeses (e.g. Emmental, Gruyere or Comte): light and fruity red wines (Beaujolais, Côtes du Rhône, Val de Loire, etc.).
- With uncooked hard cheeses (e.g. Cantal or Tomme de Savoie or Raclette): dry white or light red wines (Côtes du Rhône, Beaujolais, red Saumur, etc.).
- With blue-veined cheeses made from cow's milk (e.g. Bleu d'Auvergne, Bleu des Causses or Fourme d'Ambert): old syrupy red wines or natural sweet wines (Sauternes, Maury, Loupiac, etc.).
- With fromage frais: light wine
- With Mozzarella: fruity rosés (rosé de Provence, etc.) or light red wines (Beaujolais, etc.),
- With Ricotta: fruity white wines (Burgundy, etc.),
- With Mascarpone: dry white wines (Muscadet, etc.).
- With cheese spreads: dry white wines (Chablis, Sancerre, etc.)
For goat's milk cheeses: locally made dry white wines (Vouvray, Cahors, Gaillac).
For sheep milk cheeses, the following categories apply.
- With blue-veined cheeses like Roquefort: syrupy wines (Sauternes, old Rivesaltes, Port etc.),
- With Mediterranean cheeses (e.g. Sheep's milk): fruity red wines (Côtes-du-Rhône, Val de Loire, etc.),
- With soft cheeses with a mould rind (e.g. Perail): light and fruity red wines (Saint-Chinian, Marcillac, etc.),
- With cheeses from the Pyrenees (e.g. Ossau-Iraty): Basque Country wines (Irouleguy, Madiran, Jurançon, etc.),
- With full-bodied cheeses (e.g. Corsica or Corsiu Vecchiu): full-bodied wines (Patrimonio, Vin d'Ajaccio, etc.).
Excessive drinking is bad for your health: to be drunk in moderation