Be the chairperson of the board
IT’S wine more and cheese of an art has than been a science, a tradition but for pairing centuries.
Both wine and cheese can have a range of flavour nuances, and it can be quite tricky to balance them.
But with a little bit of research and shopping around, you can build a bold, delicious flight of cheese and wine that taste incredible together! 1. Understand the flavour notes of wines and cheeses
When reading descriptions of wine and cheese, keep an eye out for words that will tip you off about their characteristics: fruity, acid, creamy, earthy, etc. Different families of wine and cheese often have flavours they’re famous for, like parmesan’s characteristic taste 2. Choose a region to explore
It’s common that wines and cheeses from the same regions often taste great together. A similar climate and traditional pairing can make their flavours complementary. So if you happen to love wine from northern Italy, shop around for cheese from the same area. There’s a likelihood it will pair well with your favourite cab sav or chardonnay. 3. Find flavours that complement one another
When pairing wine and cheese, it’s a good idea to try to find a balance of the five basic tastes: sweetness, saltiness, bitterness, sourness, and umami. If you have a sweet, creamy cheese, you may want to pair it with a light, more sour and acidic wine. On the flip side, if your cheese is salty and full-bodied, you’ll need a fruity, full-bodied wine to balance it out. 4. Pay attention to texture
Wine and cheese both have a range of mouth-feels that can be as important as taste
when pairing the two. A meaty, heavier cheese may require a bubbly wine to cut through it. Or a melty, super-soft cheese may need a wine with a bit of a bite to balance it out. 5. Talk to the experts
The cheese aisle and the wine aisle both can be daunting, due to the sheer volume of choices presented to the customer. Talking to someone who is passionate about cheese or wine is helpful to find exactly what you’re looking for. Some great cheese shops include the Little Cheese Shop in Bayswater, Blue Cow Cheese in Belmont, Brentwood Gourmet Deli in Mount Pleasant, Lo Presti and Son in East Fremantle, and Hills Gourmet in Kalamunda.
If you’re looking for a wine guide, try Chateau Guildford in Guildford, La Vigna in Menora, Petition Wine Bar in the CBD, or Grand Cru in Mt Lawley. 6. Take a course
A fun and social way to learn how to put wine and cheese together is to take a course. Courses are offered seasonally at Fraser’s Restaurant, or you can book a group class for you and a few friends at The School of Wine. This list was compiled from, and inspired by a course, at Fraser’s.
Fraser’s Restaurants will be holding its first wine and cheese master class this year, The Ultimate Cheeseboard on March 21.
Enjoy your wine and cheese.