When getting ready for the holiday season, wine is a celebratory drink. And we all enjoy having something to eat during the holidays, so I would like to offer you some wine and cheese pairings recommendations. Here is the first of my wine and cheese pairings with two BC wines from Evolve Cellars. The two white wines I have are their Sauvignon Blanc 2018 and their Viognier 2018. The cheeses I picked are an aged Cheddar and a Brie; both are popular cheese varieties and are readily available across BC and elsewhere.
My Tasting Notes
Evolve Cellars Viognier 2018 (BC ~$20) – This wine has a pale clear straw plus lemon colour. The aromas are medium intensity and show stone fruits, a hint of orange, light floral and some woody steminess (in a good way). I think giving this wine a bit of decant time made the aromas a bit nicer with more white floral notes and less of the woody steminess. This wine is off dry, has a medium plus intensity acidity that you feel with an acidic prickle on your tongue. Medium plus body and flavour intensity. The acidity cuts through the roundness, so I may classify the wine as semi-round. Light minerality as well. Flavours of peach mostly, but also pear and citrus. There is also some of the woody steminess and some pepperiness on the palate. No major difference in flavours with decanting. Finishing with increased pepperiness, and the acidic prickle stays to the end as well.
Rating: Stone fruit, light floral, and some woody steminess on the nose and palate. It gives a light acidic prickle on your tongue. Mostly peach flavours. Peppery finish.
Evolve Cellars Sauvignon Blanc 2018 (BC $19.99) – a lighter, bright lemon colour in the glass. It has a medium intensity nose, with citrus, light orange and then a touch of peach aromas. There was a slight change in aromas with a reduction in orange and the appearance of a touch of honey. This wine is slightly off dry, it’s round and smooth, yet has tart fruit flavours. Medium plus body and flavour intensity. Flavours of peach, pear and citrus. Decanting makes the wine feel rounder in your mouth and increases the peach flavour. This wine finishes with steeliness, citrus rind, citrus and stone fruit flavours. No decant time is needed.
Rating: This Sauvignon Blanc has light citrus and peach aromas and flavours. It is smooth and round but still has tart citrus and peach flavours. Light minerality.
How do you think the cheddar and brie will pair with these two wines?
My Wine and Cheese Pairings
The first cheese I picked was the Balderson Old Cheddar. It is aged for 12 months. Their website notes this cheese has a slightly elevated salty taste and the beginning notes of sharpness, and has a firm texture. I concur that this cheese does have some sharpness to it, it is firm but still has creaminess, and it has some earthy flavour as well. I quite enjoyed nibbling on this cheese.
The second cheese is the Paysan Breton Le Brie. I picked this cheese as it is a soft cheese and should have a milder flavour. Paysan Breton Le Brie is produced in the Brittany region of France by a large cooperative using whole or semi-skimmed cow’s milk. It is described as having a bloomy rind and soft-ripened texture. It is indeed creamy with butter on the finish. It also has a nice mushroomy flavour which I think comes from the rind.
Evolve Cellars Sauvignon Blanc 2018
The Sauvignon Blanc with the brie is not a recommended pairing from me. The acidity of this wine blunted the creaminess of the cheese. The cheddar worked much better. The acidity of the wine added to the creaminess of the cheese and lessened the sharpness. It was a complementary pairing.
Evolve Cellars Viognier 2018
The Viognier worked a bit better with both of these cheeses. With the brie, the acidity in the wine was at a level where I was still able to get the butteriness of the cheese, but did not get much more benefit. The cheddar was much better. The Viognier made the cheddar feel creamier plus I still get the sharpness of the cheese.
Overall the Balderson Old Cheddar worked best for both the Evolve Cellars Sauvignon Blanc and Viognier 2018. I have more wines to come so we will see how these cheese, and possibly others pair.
Where Can I Buy These Wines?
You can purchase these wines through their Five Vines Cellars wines purchases web page. These wines may also be available at your local wine shop, but need to ask.