Red wine and cheese: friends or foes?
In the United States and Italy, cheese is usually served as an appetizer. In France, it's served between the main course and dessert (or sometimes even instead of dessert!).
However there's a general rule when it comes to wine pairing that one should start off with the lighter wines, and then move on to richer, heartier and more complex ones.
Therefore depending on the country that you're in, you might either end up with a very light red to sip on while you nibble on cheese and crackers, or a very heavy red to savor while you eat strong cheeses in place of dessert.
But who came up with the rule that cheese must always be served with red wine anyway?
Historically, we have a tendancy to drink red wine with cheese.
That's because when cheese is eaten after dinner, we tend to just continue drinking whatever wine was served with the main course. And once diners have switched to the heavier main course (red) wine, it's hard to go back to a lighter white just to drink along with the cheese. Hence the tendancy to pair red wine with cheese.
For every cheese there is a great wine pairing to be made. From a taste standpoint, white wine is actually a better match for the strong flavors of cheese. So don't hesitate to go out on a limb and suggest a light, chilled white next time you're serving a cheese platter to your guests.
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Chef Tips and Tricks
You'll drool over this 3 cheese, bacon-wrapped baguette.
- Blue cheese
- Cheddar cheese
- 1 baguette
- Sun-dried tomatoes
- Cut your cheeses into thin slices
- Slice baguette down the middle (like a sandwich)
- Layer cheddar, blue, and mozarella cheese inside the bread
- Top with sun-dried tomatoes
- Close baguette and wrap with bacon strips
- Put in oven and bake for 20 minutes at 350 degrees
- Slice and serve!