From egg-in-a-nest grilled cheese to mac-and-cheese grilled cheese served out of a truck, the humble childhood classic is one of today's biggest food trends. But what do you get when you pair the lowbrow sandwich with wine, a beverage best known for its refined sophistication? Thanks to an Aspen seminar led by cheese expert Laura Werlin, I discovered the answer: pure gastronomic bliss.
Laura offered not only a number of steps to re-creating such sensory nirvana, but she also shared her favorite grilled cheese and wine pairings.
- Before selecting grilled cheeses to pair with wines, taste each cheese you plan to use in its natural, unmelted state, alongside the wine you plan to pair it with.
- Be sure to test the pairings both with and without a cheese's rind; a washed or blooming edible rind can tend to make wine pairings taste soapy.
- When enjoying a cheese and wine pairing, always taste the wine first; cheese affects how wine tastes much more than the other way around. Start with a first sip of wine, then take a second to calibrate your palate and allow it to adjust to the wine's acidity and tannin; then take a bite of your cheese, followed by another sip of wine.
For some of Laura's favorite pairings, read more.