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Pairing Ideas

Cheese and Wine Pairing

Here are the essentials for choosing your cheese:

  • Soft or Fresh: think Mozzarella, Goat Cheese, Brie
  • Semi-Soft/Ripened: Gouda, Blue Cheese, Gorgonzola and Cambozola, Camembert
  • Semi- Hard: Manchego, Gruyere
  • Hard: Parmigiano-Reggiano, Pecorino, Gouda and Aged Cheddar.

For variety, try to include three different kinds of cheese and a selection of goat, sheep and cow’s milk cheese. Younger, more fresh cheese will be more tangy and less complex than their aged counterparts, which are often more savory.

Pairing the wine

Younger cheese might pair better with wines that have a higher acidity and are a little more fruit-forward. We suggest Viansa Rose, Sonoma County and Valley & Vine Sauvignon Blanc, California, or Windsor Brut Rose, Sonoma County, Platinum Series. An older cheese might call for a wine that has heavier tannins, more body and complexity. Our suggestions are Cosentino Winery THE Poet, Monogamy Cabernet Sauvignon, North Coast, and Clos Pegase Merlot, Mitsuko's Vineyard, Carneros.

Below is a quick guide to help you with your selection:

  • Sauvignon Blanc: Chévre, Asiago, Gouda, Gruyere
  • Riesling: Colby, Gouda, Brie, Blue Cheese
  • Chardonnay: Brie, Provolone, Baby Swiss, Colby Jack
  • Rosé: Feta, Goat Cheese, Mozzarella
  • Pinot Noir: Gouda, Feta, Swiss, Port Salut, cheddar
  • Cabernet Sauvignon: Blue, Camembert, Sharp Cheddar
  • Zinfandel: Pepper Jack, Sheep’s Milk Cheese, Blue Cheese
  • Merlot: Gorgonzola, Brie, Camembert, Cheddar
  • Sparkling: Beaufort, Colby, Edam, Brie

Looking for a good selection of wines? Keep it simple by choosing one of our tasting kits.

Other important tips

  • Make sure to have some cocktail napkins and plates on hand to make it easy for guests to help themselves.
  • Plan for 1 ounce per cheese per guest and 1 glass of wine per hour per guest.
  •  Make sure each cheese has it’s own knife. 
  • Have some delicious crackers, crostini or bread on hand for your guests to enjoy with your cheese platter.
  • Serve your cheese with some accompaniments like charcuterie, crudités, figs, grapes, apples, nuts and olives. Some more ripened cheeses are delicious when served with honey or fruit chutneys.
  • When in doubt, ask your specialty grocer. Tell them the wines you have on hand and ask their opinion on pairings. They may even have something special in stock.

Search for any of the wines listed above using the wine locator here. And remember, all of the wines featured in this post are available in the Sisterhood Direct Online Wine Shop.