Wine Talk

Snooth User: coffeebean24

Wine, Cheese, and the French Open

Posted by coffeebean24, Jun 3, 2009.

Thinking about have a wine and cheese party with some friends while watching the French Open. Any wine suggestions? I live in The South so right now the weather is very hot and very humid, so wines that serve well chilled would be appreciated. Also, any wine cheese combos you guys know of that are tasty (I'm not the best at combining the two). Thanks!!!

Replies

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Reply by Robert Dallas Gray, Jun 3, 2009.

If you're going to go native in honour of the tennis, a Sancerre would be good -- either a white or one of the Pinot Noir-based rosés (although they can be a bit hard to get hold of). Definitely something zingy to combat the heat ...

Cheese-wise, I think a reasonably serious Beaujolais (Morgon, Brouilly etc.) with a bit of a chill on it works really well with cheese on a hot day -- something not too pongy and blue, though; maybe a Comté or something like that.

Bonne chance!

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Reply by dmcker, Jun 3, 2009.

Good Brie and a milder goat cheese should also work with the Sancerre, or since we're in white Loire mode also a Pouilly Fume or even a Savenierres (yummm). A good beaujolais sounds excellent, as well as maybe a Tavel rose from close to the Beaujolais area, or Anjou rose also from the Loire. Back in the Loire, a Chinon red could also work with this mix, though you shouldn't refrigerate it too much. Sounds like a two-rivers (Loire and Rhone) theme! ;-)

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Reply by Eric Guido, Jun 3, 2009.

I think an important question here is, are your friends wine lovers? I only ask because, in the past, I wasted a lot of good wine on under developed palates that really didn't get the wines I presented to them. Are these people just looking for fun tasty wines or to really delve into what's in the glass?

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Reply by dmcker, Jun 3, 2009.

Always a good question, Eric. When I was first in the throws of burgeoning wine passion I would try to perfect meals and wine combinations with bottles that would be worth thousands of dollars now and would light up the eyes of any wine connoisseur, but tended to fly quickly past the tastes and interests of several members of whatever group. Was a little disappointed when the cliche happened and someone asked if it was OK to put ice in their glass of very, very good vintage claret. So for a long time now, and except for on very special occasions, I tend to ratchet things down a bit unless I know the people in the group will appreciate what they're being served.

That being said, the Tavel and Anjou roses, and Beaujolais and even some of the Loire whites shouldn't be that pricey. I assumed, Coffeebean, you were thinking French wines and cheeses because of the tennis event venue.

Depending on how much you want to get into the cheese selection, and the capacities of your local merchants, you might try to find some Sancerre or Crottin de Chavignol goat cheeses from the Loire, and the Charolais or Maconnais goat cheeses from Burgundy/Beaujolais to go with the wines from those two areas. I'm a believer in wines going perhaps best with the foods from their own areas (don't get me started on the time I and a friend devoured some superb Montrachet goat cheese with a couple bottles of heavenly Le Montrachet white :-) ). These goat cheeses are medium strength, though the longer they're aged the stronger they'll become, fresher being milder. If this all is too much trouble for this occasion, or in general, look for some good domestic goat and sheep and cow cheeses. It's always fun to explore, taste and learn--even cheeses and other foods, not just the wines....

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Reply by Gregory Dal Piaz, Jun 5, 2009.

So I see some of the tennis results but how's the wine and cheese pairing going?

I usually expect people to have access to the more common cheese, which today is rather an extensive list, so reccos for Brie, goat cheese, Comte, Morbier and Roquefort are usually what I am asked for. So in order and coming from France:

Brie - younger Brie is what many people find and a lighter simpler Chardonnay works well, a white Macon or Beaujolais Blanc for example.

Goat cheese - Sauvignon Blanc, Sancerre rules the roost!

Comte - a bit nutty, a bit sharp and in fact French Gruyère, a good cheese to pair with some of the oxidived whites from the Jura or off dry Rieslings and Pinot Gris from Alsace.

Morbier - soft and creamy with a penchant for pairing well with the lighter, lightly funky reds of the Jura

Roquefort - Some fine dessert wine is in order to balance the salty/sharp tones of this blue sheeps milk cheese, no wonder it pairs so well with late harvest Sauvignon Blanc based wines but try it with a sweetish vouvray for another great pair.

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Reply by Pymonte, Jun 7, 2009.

Yeah, Greg. Morbier is all about the funk. Pairing that, Epoisses, French Muenster, Red Hawk, or other soft, stinky cheeses with a sweet Gewurztraminer is a beautiful thing as well.

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Reply by dmcker, Jun 7, 2009.

So coffeebean, how'd your wine-and-cheese fete go?

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Reply by Snoother 1296574, Jul 23, 2013.
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