When it comes to wine and cheese pairings, there are few combinations more classic and satisfying than soft cheeses like Brie and Camembert. These creamy, delicate cheeses have a buttery richness that pairs beautifully with a variety of wines. Whether you’re hosting a wine and cheese party or simply enjoying a cheese plate at home, here are some perfect wine pairings to enhance the flavors of Brie, Camembert, and other soft cheeses.
Champagne and Sparkling Wines
Soft cheeses like Brie and Camembert have a creamy texture and subtle flavors that are complemented by the effervescence of Champagne and sparkling wines. The bubbles in these wines help to cleanse the palate between bites of cheese, refreshing the taste buds and enhancing the creaminess of the cheese. Look for a dry or extra-dry Champagne or sparkling wine, as the sweetness of a demi-sec or sec style can overpower the delicate flavors of the cheese.
Pairing Suggestion: Brie with Champagne
Brie is a mild, creamy cheese with a bloomy rind that pairs exceptionally well with Champagne. The crisp acidity and bubbles in Champagne cut through the richness of the Brie, while the toasty, nutty flavors of the wine complement the buttery flavors of the cheese. Serve the Brie at room temperature, allowing it to soften and develop its flavors, and pair it with a dry or extra-dry Champagne for a perfect match.
Related Article: The Best Wine Tours in Europe
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White Burgundy, made from Chardonnay grapes in the Burgundy region of France, is another excellent choice for pairing with soft cheeses. The rich, buttery flavors of White Burgundy mirror the creamy textures of Brie and Camembert, creating a harmonious combination. The wine’s balanced acidity helps to cut through the richness of the cheese, while its subtle fruit flavors complement the earthy, mushroom-like undertones often found in these soft cheeses.
If you prefer red wine, opt for a light-bodied, fruity Pinot Noir to pair with soft cheeses. The red berry flavors and subtle earthiness of Pinot Noir complement the flavors of Brie and Camembert without overpowering them. The wine’s acidity and tannins help to balance the richness of the cheese, creating a well-rounded and enjoyable pairing. Look for a Pinot Noir with moderate tannins and bright acidity to enhance the flavors of the cheese.
For a truly indulgent and decadent wine and cheese pairing, try pairing soft cheeses with Sauternes. Sauternes is a sweet, botrytized dessert wine from the Bordeaux region of France. Although it may seem counterintuitive to pair sweet wine with cheese, the complex flavors and honeyed notes of Sauternes beautifully complement the creamy, buttery flavors of Brie and Camembert. The sweetness of the wine balances the slight saltiness of the cheese, creating a delicious contrast of flavors.
When it comes to wine and cheese pairings, experimentation is key. Don’t be afraid to try different wines and cheeses to find your own perfect combinations. Whether you prefer the delicate bubbles of Champagne, the rich flavors of White Burgundy, or the fruity notes of Pinot Noir, there is a wine out there that will beautifully complement your favorite soft cheeses.