The SOMM Journal

August / September 2017

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Page 30 of 148

30 { THE SOMM JOURNAL } AUGUST/SEPTEMBER { wheying in } IS SHERRY THE WORLD'S GREATEST cheese wine? If I had to choose, that's where I'd land. From dry, crisp manzanilla to nutty oloroso to raisin-scented Pedro Ximénez, there's a Sherry for every cheese. Many somms already know that. Now we just have to convince the American public. In hopes of persuading you to pitch Sherry with the cheese course more often, here are some match-ups that sing for me. With fino or manzanilla Sherry These dry, brisk, saline Sherries are most appealing at the start of a meal. They pair well with sheep cheeses that have a similarly sharp, salty flavor (like Manchego) or those with herbaceous, smoky or subtle nutty notes. RECOMMENDED Lightly ripened sheep or goat cheeses with herbed rinds: Brin d'Amour, Capriole Julianna, Fleur du Maquis Lightly smoked cheeses smoked mozzarella or scamorza, Fiore Sardo, Idiazábal Aged sheep's milk cheeses Bellwether Farms Pepato, Bleating Heart Fat Bottom Girl, Manchego, Pecorino Toscano or Pecorino di Ginepro, Roncal, Zamorano With dry amontillado or palo cortado Sherry These styles have more intensity and more pronounced nutty aromas. They comple- ment cheeses with more concentration, especiall y aged goat cheeses with their subtle caramel scent. They also work with more buttery, mushroomy cheeses in the Brie realm. RECOMMENDED Aged, firm cow's milk cheeses Bellwether Farms Blackstone (cow-sheep blend); Cheddar, Mahón, Parmigiano Reggiano, Point Reyes Farmstead Toma, Vella Dry Jack Bloomy-rind cow's milk cheeses Brie Fermier, Camembert, Jasper Hill Moses Sleeper, Mt. Townsend Cirrus Nutty aged goat cheeses Garrotxa, Goat Lady Dairy Providence, Majorero Nutty Basque sheep's milk cheeses Abbaye de Belloc, Ossau-Iraty, Petit Agour, P'tit Basque With dry oloroso Sherry This style has a deep nuttiness, silky body and dry finish. It works wonderfully with nutty alpine-style cheeses, well-aged goat cheeses and voluptuous triple-creams. RECOMMENDED Alpine and alpine-style cheeses Beaufort, L'Etivaz, Le Maréchal, Pleasant Ridge Reserve, Roth Grand Cru Reserve, Tarentaise Nutty aged goat cheeses Andante Tomme Dolce, Avalanche Cabra Blanca Triple-creams Coach Farm Triple Cream, Domaine du Vallage With off-dry amontillado or oloroso Sherry These styles have obvious sweetness and deeper nut and caramel aromas. They love aged cheeses with similar flavor profiles: pro - foundly nutty, buttery and sweet in the finish. RECOMMENDED Alpine and alpine-style cheeses Appenzeller, Challerhocker, Comté, cave- aged Gruyère, Pleasant Ridge Reserve, Red Witch, Roth Grand Cru Surchoix Gouda and Gouda-style cheeses Boerenkaas, Ewephoria, Jeff's Select, Lamb Chopper, Marieke Gouda, Mimolette, Prima Donna Nutty aged cow's milk cheeses Ancient Heritage Hannah (mixed milk), Parmigiano Reggiano, Piave Mellow, buttery blue cheeses Bay Blue, Bayley Hazen Blue, Caveman Blue, Chirboga Blue, Gorgonzola dolce With Pedro Ximenez (PX) or cream Sherry With the dried-fruit and caramel flavor of these dessert Sherries, offer bold blue cheeses, rich triple-creams and long-aged Goudas. RECOMMENDED Bold blue cheese Valdeón, Gorgonzola, Rogue River Blue Triple-cream cheeses Cowgirl Creamery Mt. Tam, Brillat-Savarin, Nettle Meadow Kunik Gouda L'Amuse Gouda, Brabander Goat Gouda, Wilde Weide Gouda Janet Fletcher is the author of Cheese & Wine, Cheese & Beer and The Cheese Course. She publishes Planet Cheese, a weekly blog, and teaches cheese-appreciation classes around the country. A Match Made in Andalusia SHERRY IS AN IDEAL WINE FOR THE CHEESE COURSE by Janet Fletcher PHOTO: KLENOVA VIA THINKSTOCK

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