Gewürztraminer: every cheese enthusiast’s dream
Its intense aromas, which range from ripe mango to fresh tangerine, and the tastefulness of the spices allow infinite possibilities and you will have a lot of fun experimenting all the combinations. As a guideline, you should choose Alpine, to add the scent of flowers in the mix, and tangy cheeses to balance the vehemence of Gewürz. Don’t be shy and try as many as you can, it’s unlikely that Gewürztraminer will disappoint you! Cheese is like wine, ripening it loses acidity and rounds off the corners: flavors and body get thicker. So let’s choose for your aged cheese an equal wine, at least three years old, to help the complex notes get along each other.
To tone down the piquancy of some cheeses a simple off dry Gewürztraminer will be enough, however if your passion are blue cheese you should looking for the extra sweetness of a passito (raisin) wine. In the best case scenario you will be enjoying a botrytized Gewürztraminer with your delicious Stilton, and believe me, when this happens Heaven’s gates will open wild, because the flavor of the mold enriches the lushness of the pairing. More then a flavors the mold is a sensation (of medicine): it’s like entering in a old apothecary shop with all jars over the counter.
Pairing aromatic cheese is easy as cake, follow the spices. By the way, we have at our disposal so many kind of wine that you will always find a cheese to pair with, just avoid fresh cheeses like ricotta and mozzarella, in which the milk has a racy acidity that is more suitable for Sauvignon Blanc or Vermentino. Here we have some fast and furious pairings!
The plenitude, nuts and honey, of this cheese is amazing and able to curb the exuberance of the most structured Gewürztraminers, like the 2009 Kolbenhof, from Hofstatter.
All smoked cheeses are welcome when you are speaking of sweet spices. This Spanish cheese is the soul mate of the 2009 Kastelaz, from Elena Walch.
The chopped nuts and walnuts in the dough are a perfect fit for an aromatic Gewürztraminer like the 2008 Lunare, from Kellerei Terlan.
Its cloves recall the ones of the super spicy 2009 Gewürztraminer Brunnenhof.
Castelmagno and Cheddar
Dried fruits and flower memories mixed together are awesome: give a shot to the colossal and rare 2008 Aureus, passito, Niedermayr estate.
Parmigiano Reggiano & Caerphilly
A rainbow of fruits over fields of glaring flowers and no wine can display a bigger tropical fazenda blaze then the big 2009 Gewürztraminer Praepositus, from Novacella Abbey.
First let’s fried it in a sesame crust, top it with a sweet-salty dressing of ginger, nut, oyster sauce and scallions and then enjoy the freshness of a bottle of 2009 Ritterhof’s Crescendo.
The cannon ball is thick and rich, salty and sweet, with zesty flavors of hazelnuts, almonds and pumpkin. Punchy aromas that pretend a floral wine such as the 2010 Flora, Girlan winery.
Cendré de Vergy and Epoisses de Bourgogne
Buried in the ash the first and rubbed with brandy the second, they are two great cheeses that will give you satisfaction. Their explosive intensity is blended with sweet and contrasting flavors and only a tough Gewürztraminer can downplay such a stormy impact. 2004 Zind Humbrecht, if you want sultan suggestions or 2010 Tramonti, from Marco Donati estate, if you prefer to spice up the pairing.
You will notice that older cheeses are easier to handle and more appropriate to develop rewarding synergies, above all if you are aiming to the ultimate pairing with botrytized Gewürztraminer, in French called Sélection de Grains Nobles, because the berries are harvested one by one. Put some slices of Stilton, Blu del Monviso, Cashel, Crozier and Bénédictin Blue, Gorgonzola and Roquefort in your platter, add graciously a couple of bottles—2008 Gewürztraminer Linticlarus, from Tiefenbrunner, and 2008 Terminum Vendemmia Tardiva (late harvest), from Tramin—and forget about Sauternes, 1978 Sherry, Porto and stuff like honey, jam, jelly: it’s time to make your dreams come true!