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The Wine & Cheese Corner - Barbera Pairings

The Wine & Cheese Corner - Barbera Pairings

SACRAMENTO, CA Wine: Barbera, Lava Cap, El Dorado, 2010 cropped_Image_032714 Cheeses: Cowgirl Creamery's St. Pat Cheeseland Inc.'s KoKos Coconut Cheese Chimay's Grand Cru cropped_Image_032714

From left to right: Cowgirl Creamery's St. Pat, Cheeseland Inc.'s KoKos Coconut Cheese, Chimay's Grand Cru

The Barbera I selected was a medium-bodied, fruity red. This type of wine goes well with semi-aged and medium-hard cheeses, as well as washed rind cheeses. Cowgirl Creamery's St. Pat, a washed rind cheese wrapped in stinging nettle leaves, from Point Reyes Station, CA: If you concerned about getting stung in the throat by the hollow stinging hairs called trichomes that inject histamine and other chemicals that produce a stinging sensation, fear not. The Creamery's process involves freezing nettle leaves to remove the painful stingers. Stinging nettle is actually extremely nutritious and has medicinal properties. However, I barely noticed the taste. This cheese was a mellow, soft, washed-rind cheese with a very creamy texture. I enjoyed this pairing very much, and I highly recommend washed-rind cheeses to be paired with Barbera. Cheeseland Inc.'s KoKos Coconut Cheese, a cow's milk Gouda made with organic coconut cream, from Holland: The coconut cream adds an extra creaminess, as well as a coconut aftertaste. I'm excited about this cheese because it was very tasty and so different from everything else I've had. It is also slightly sweet and while it paired OK with my deep red Barbera wine, I feel that a refreshing white may have made for a better match. Chimay's Grand Cru, a semi-hard pressed washed-rind cheese made from cow's milk, from Belgium: Chimay describes this cheese as "intense and pure". Made by the Trappist monks of Scourmont, this cheese was creamy and pungent, with a flavor that had floral, fruity, and mellow notes. I can say that the natural rind was the best part; it was crunchy and tasted like bacon. Overall, I enjoyed it more than the Chimay Grand Classique that I tried a few weeks back. It didn't pair well with the wine, but I'm guessing it's made more for pairing with Belgian beer. Be sure to check back next week for more delicious Wine & Cheese Corner pairing reviews. Cowgirl Creamery Cheeseland Inc. Chimay