8 Pairings for a Wine and Cheese Tasting

Wine and cheese tastings are a great way to sample new wines and cheeses, as well as have a party with minimal set-up and clean-up. The pairings below make for the perfect party - a variety of different tastes and textures, with each wine complementing the cheese.

Cheese: Brie
Wine: Cabernet, Beaujolais (except Beaujolais Nouveau), Champagne
Taste: Brie is a comparatively mild cheese and it plays nice with most wines.

Cheese: Bleu Cheese
Wine: Any sweet white, a strong red, or port wine
Taste: The strong flavor of blue cheese requires either a strong glass of red alongside it or a sweet wine to accent it. It also goes well with foie gras.

Cheese: Cheddar or Cantal
Wine: A strong red like a Cabernet Sauvignon or Syrah, or a white like Sauvignon Blanc.
Taste: Mature cheeses like the company of strong wines. Be bold!

Cheese: Camembert
Wine: A light red like a Merlot or Burgundy
Taste: Stonger than brie, softer than bleu, you'll want a wine somewhere in the middle for this cheese. Or for something different, try cider or stout beer.

Cheese: Chevre
Wine: A dry white from the Loire River Valley, like a Sancerre or Vouvray, or a Gewurztraminer
Taste: Chevre goes with the same wines you would choose for fish - nice, dry whites. You can also pair with champagne.

Cheese: Manchego or Comte
Wine: A light rosé
Taste: These hard, nutty cheeses like the fruitiness of a rosé, but don't go too sweet.

Cheese: Boursin or Alouette
Wine: Pinot Gris, Pinot Grigio, Gewurztraminer
Taste: Smooth, easy cheeses like the company of smooth, easy wine.

Cheese: Havarti
Wine: A red Bordeaux
Taste: Splurge on a red Bordeaux to go with your classy Havarti.

The above spread is ideal for 10-12 people; you can buy more or less depending on the size of your party. Be sure to buy several baguettes (slice them into 1/2-inch slices before the party) and various crackers for spreading. Bon appétit!

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