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New Year’s Eve Champagne + Cheese Guide

Champagne Friendly Case

Cheese Loves Bubbles

Looking for a New Year’s resolution that you’ll want to stick to?  We suggest “Eat More Cheese.” (Actually, we suggested the same last year, and for once, I can say we lived up to our resolution!) If you want to join us, you can get an early start on it with a decadent cheese + salumi platter for New Year’s Eve.

By the way, the BEST NEWS EVER came out last year that cheese can help you stay slim, it’s high in protein, may help prevent diabetes, is good for your teeth.  Seriously!

So with that out of the way, we can assure you that pairing bubbly with cheese is one of life’s great pleasures.  Want to go the extra mile?  Throw in some charcuterie and add some chocolate!

Unlike red and white wines, which want specific cheese pairings, there are very few cheeses that don’t go with champagne.  Here are some of our favorite suggestions:

Triple Creme Cheeses

Champagne Cheese 2Rich, buttery triple cremes are the classic champagne cheese.  The refreshing bubbles balance the ultra-rich cheese (and leave your palate ready for more).  Try Delice de Borgougne or Mt. Tam.

Holiday Seasonal Cheeses

There are two seasonal cheeses that just say Christmas and New Year’s Eve to us!  They are only available in the winter months, and we don’t think it’s a coincidence that they are even more delicious with champagne.  Rush Creek Reserve is a cult-status cheese that tastes like warm butter with a brie rind.  We have a SMALL allocation directly from the cheesemaker (pre-orders accepted).

Harbison, voted best cheese from America two years running at the World Cheese Awards, in another find choice.  This spoonable, soft-ripened cheese pairs beautifully with sparkling wine.

Truffle Cheeses 

What says ‘New Year’s’ more than champagne and truffles?  We suggest Truffle Tremor.   It’s the perfectly balanced marriage of ripened goat cheese jam-packed with Italian black summer truffles.

We also love Sottocenere al Tartfuo, an Italian ash-rinded cheese with actual truffles in the milk.  Brianna with Truffles, is another fave from Jacobs & Brichford in Indiana.  It’s a semi-firm, smear-ripened cheese with Italian truffles blended into the creamy paste.

Alpine Cheeses

Champagne Cheese 5Champagne highlights the sweet, nutty flavors of these hearty mountain cheeses.   One favorite pairing is Pleasant Ridge Reservewhich is also the most awarded cheese in American history.  Other options in this category are Wasatch Mountain Gruyere and Southern-Aged Fortsonia.

Blue Cheese

A sweeter champagne is a great contrast with a blue cheese—think salty and sweet.  Stick with the creamier and milder blues, like Stilton or West West Blue from Parish Hill Creamery (we’re the only store in CO where you can get it) or Bayley Hazen Blue, also from Vermont).  But be careful, too strong a blue will overwhelm the sparkler.

Another one we love is the holiday seasonal Rogue River Blue, a very special blue that is wrapped in Sryah grape leaves that have been macerated in a local pear brandy.  It was voted the world’s best blue cheese two years in a row at the World Cheese Awards.

Parmigiano Reggiano

After triple cremes, this might be the ultimate champagne pairing.  Umami meets umami.

Tips

Want to make your own pairing?  Match your cheese and sparkling wine based on similarities.  In general, the stronger the cheese, the more powerful a champagne you need.  Pair a lighter, fruity cheese with a rose sparkler, but a mature alpine with an older champagne.

Come on in and we can taste some cheese with you and make some recommendations so you get the ultimate New Year’s pairing.  We can make a cheese tray in the store based on your tastes, or if you want us to do it for you, just let us know, and your platter will be ready for your pickup.