In honor of National Cheese Day, we’d like to take a little time to enjoy some cheese and wine! A match made in heaven, but why? What is it that makes this classic combination so enjoyable to so many people from all walks of life? According to research, it is the combination of astringent and fatty opposing each other on your palate that creates a balanced mouthfeel. This is a classic combination used in cuisine all over the globe: oil & vinegar, red wine & steak, sushi & pickled ginger, etc. When you drink something mildly astringent like wine or green tea, the more you drink, the more astringent it becomes. By nature, people have a desire to have a balanced amount of senses on the palate. When something is out of balance, we crave the opposite to find our natural mojo. How this applies to cheese and wine: when we eat our cheese, we don’t eat all the cheese then slam a glass of wine down behind it, we take moments to alternate between the cheese bites and sips of wine, because we are super refined individuals and our decorum is on par with the gods.
It is natural for us to feel that there is too much fat on our palate and naturally crave something astringent. If you had a mouthful of cheese and the choice of a glass of wine or a glass of water to wash it down, what would you choose? Without thinking, you’d most likely reach for the wine as it’s astringency will cut the fats on your palate nicely, while the glass of water won’t clear your palate nearly as well. It’s the basic idea behind “palate cleansers” or intermezzos in nicer meals; after the entrée course, usually an astringent sorbet is served before the dessert course(s) to wash away the rich fats and flavors of the entrée and hit the reset button before a rich, sweet dessert.
All that said, enjoy your cheese sparingly and your wine in quantity, cheers!
Ryan: Extra Sharp Cheddar & Pinot Noir
Owen: Cambozola & Syrah
Jen: Double Cream Brie & Rosé
Maribel: Asadero & Gavi
Chris: Sausage Pizza & Napa Cabernet Sauvignon
Tom: Camembert & Chinon
Caroline: Stilton & Port
Cameron: Aged Gruyere & Madiran
Andre: Ossau-Iraty & Bourgogne Rouge
Jess: Saint-André French Triple Crème & Cabernet Sauvignon
Henry: Italian Parmesan & Amarone
Katie: Roquefort Blue Cheese & Rosé
Mystery Office Vegan: Daiya Sharp Cheddar & Zinfandel