We already talked to you about cheese last week but you know what, we're going to do it again because cheese is life, especially in this winter period when no one is reluctant to have a little tartiflette on the go. And whether it's for a tartiflette on the go or an international competition raclette, it's always the same dilemma: what do we drink? It wouldn't be a question of passing for a painter in front of grandpa. That’s why we’re telling you everything about winter wine and cheese pairings…
The fat triplet
The sacrosanct mountain dishes which have been wildly competing for the podium of the ultimate winter meal since the dawn of time form a trinity adored by all: raclette , Savoyard fondue and tartiflette. All three originate from Savoie (French or Swiss) and have similar flavors, textures and aromas, they will easily pair with the same types of wine. We will seek here both to enhance the creaminess of these warm dishes and to counterbalance their undeniable heaviness with a freshness that a dry white will bring us. Obviously, red is prohibited if it is too tannic because then it will weigh down the dish, which is the opposite of the desired effect, in addition to clashing with the acidity of the cheese.
Classic but chic
The easiest is to opt for a Savoie wine, the regional pairings being a guarantee of harmony. Here, a Savoie will highlight the creaminess of the cheese while bringing a little freshness to the whole, which is not too much for dishes of this density. Head for an Apremont, a Seyssel, a Roussette de Bugey or a Chignin Bergeron for classic but effective if not perfect pairings.
The other regions, however, are not left out: the Loire can offer you a very becoming Chenin Sec to accompany your feast (which you can also taste right there ). On the Burgundian side, you are spoiled for choice with an Aligoté, a Chablis or a Pouilly-Fuissé which will bring fruitiness and minerality. For the tartiflette in particular, you can also turn to wines with more exuberant aromas which will compete with the dish such as a Crozes-Hermitage or a Châteauneuf-du-Pape (also available for tasting here ).
Surprise your taste buds!
If you want to live a slightly more original experience and surprise your taste buds, you can opt for wines that will add a new dimension to your bounty of Beaufort, Reblochon or Raclette. Think of a Riesling which will add a subtle fruity and floral touch, or a Gewurztraminer for even more Alsatian extravagance. But our favorite remains and remains the Jura Savagnin which will add a beautiful complexity to your cheese delight. An Arbois, a Château-Chalon or even a vin jaune can accompany your winter dishes wonderfully. If you deftly move from a Savoyard fondue to a Jura fondue (with Comté), vin jaune even becomes a perfect match. Be careful though, these are wines that have their own character and they may not please everyone.
Okay and now for those who are eternally angry with white or the inexpugnable fans of red, yes it is possible to accompany our trinity with the fat of red wine, phew! Be careful though, it still remains almost impossible for fondue since it is simmered with white wine, in addition to all these questions of fat, acidity and tannins that we have already covered. But if you turn to very light grape varieties like Mondeuse, Trousseau or Gamay that you will find in Savoie, you will be able to create fruity and light accords that are very pleasant with raclette and tartiflette. Beaujolais and Jura are not to be outdone with respectively Gamay, and Poulsard and Trousseau which will demonstrate a certain freshness with their intense fruitiness, perfect to contrast our mountain behemoths.
So ! You no longer have any excuse not to enhance your winter feasts and other cheese orgies with a well-made wine that will enhance the creaminess while balancing the heaviness of these noble dishes to which we love to honor so much.