Making Cheese in a Tropical Setting, A Visit to Quesos Monte Azul in Chimirol de Rivas, Costa Rica

When we have visited Costa Rica in the past, we noticed that most of the cheese here falls into the “fresh category” but never really put much thought into why that might be. We usually just chalked it up to which foods are popular here and that a wedge of hard, funky cheese didn’t really fit in. Once we discovered the Monte Azul brand of cheese as something more relatable to our palates and one that was possible to pair with wine, we found out the information we had been missing. Cheese is different in Costa Rica for good reason! It just so happened that Monte Azul was near where we were staying so we arranged for a visit there. Our entry will share the things we learned that day. Read More…

Stemmari Nero D’Avola and Monterrey cheese

For this week’s Wine And Cheese Friday entry we’ll be featuring our first pairing during this trip to Costa Rica. We love visiting Costa Rica, but have found it challenging to find a wine and cheese selection that coincides with our palates. Wine can be found in local grocery and liquor stores here in Pérez Zeledón, but the selection is usually limited. Sweet wines are more popular here, whereas we prefer something drier and more complex, and most wines we find are from Chile and Argentina. Since we’ve visited three times previously, we’ve found our staple brands to enjoy on a regular basis, but are always hoping for something new and interesting. Imagine our surprise when we came across a Sicilian brand that had been previously featured on #WiningHourChat! We made a mental note and went back a week later to pick up the bottle of Stemmari Nero D’Avola.
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Chilean Sparkling Wines

Our final sparkling wine entry for February will showcase sparkling wines from Chile. During our time in Costa Rica and Panama, we have tasted many Chilean brands. When I discuss whats in my glass (#WIMG) on social media, it surprised people that Chilean wineries produced sparkling wines, since they aren’t readily available in the US. Read More…

Sparkling Wines and Cheeses, as we begin our California Wine Adventure

We continue through the month of February with more sparkling wine! We did this tasting with Always Five Star (Pam) and her husband, John, during our trip out to California. Their home on Seal Beach was our first stop in the state. And really who else would you expect us to drink sparkling wine with? They already had a cheese shop picked out for us to visit, Cheese Addiction. Sounds right up my alley! We didn’t need an occasion to eat cheese and drink sparkling wine but it just so happened that Pam hit 10k Instagram followers while we were there! Let the celebrating begin. Read More…

Co-hosting #WiningHourChat with Chris from Wine101 Hamden

We had such a good time the first time I was the guest on WiningHourChat, that Li, Maggie and Cara asked if I’d like to do it again. We had the idea to do it sometime in the Fall and I already new I’d be in New England then. This got me thinking that Chris from Wine 101 Hamden is also in New England and that we could cohost the chat. And so it began! Read More…

Celebrate Valentine’s Day with Sparkling Wine and Cheese!

Can you believe we’ve only had a handful of Wine and Cheese Friday sparkling wine entries? We really like this type of wine so we figured we could take this chance to learn some more, and who can resist the bubbly? Sparkling wine is always festive, but what better reason to drink some bubbles than Valentine’s Day. It’s only a few days away, you know. Learn more alongside us and then give a new bottle of bubbles a try on Feb. 14. Of course, we’ve got some cheeses in here too for you to pick up. Read More…

Wine And Cheese Surprises in Silicon Valley

When we arrived in San Carlos, CA, for Labor Day weekend, there was no question in anyone’s mind that we’d be enjoying lots of wine and cheese in the days to come. Our friend Kristy, a new mom, had been counting the days until we arrived since her wine drinking had been on hiatus during her “mommy to be” days. She planned a grand wine and cheese feast to start out the festivities with 4 cheeses and a bottle of rosé. Maria and Neil were ready! Such a delicious evening! Read More…

Kathy & Gale host Wine and Cheese night for the third time!

Cheeselovers Day is only a few days away. What better way to celebrate than with a pairing of 4 wines and 4 cheeses! We did the tasting for this entry back in the summer during our visit to Lake Erie Wine Country. One of our favorite things about wine and cheese in this area is the Reverie Creamery and Market in Mayville, NY. They have such a great selection of not only their own cheeses but many of the big hitters too. We’ve made a trip out to this shop a few times along with our annual wine tasting voyage around the lake. Actually the tradition now includes the wine tastings, the visit to the cheese shop, and a group tasting with family. Read More…

Dracaena Wines Cabernet Franc and Lazy Lady Farm Duet Cheese

This was the last bottle of 2015 Cabernet Franc by Dracaena Wines, and we got to pair it with some fancy cheese from Vermont! We purchased this bottle of wine direct from Lori during our visit out to Paso Robles back in the summer, . I knew I’d want to find a special cheese to pair with it so I hung on to the bottle for a bit. Since we travel full-time and have no wine cellar, we decided to send it off to my mom and enjoy it in New England in a couple months. Early on in our visit to New England, we planned a trip out to Vermont and we knew we’d find a nice cheese there. We purchased the Lazy Lady Farm duet cheese at our first stop of the day, Grafton Village Store. Grafton, VT not only has a cool cheese shop, there is also a covered bridge, tons of foliage, and an old library. We enjoyed so much wine during the Summertime, that we were happy to have this bottle saved for a later day. Without further ado, the pairing of Dracaena Wines Cabernet Franc and Lazy Lady Farm Duet Cheese. Read More…

Savor the Flavor 2018

We came up with the idea for the Savor the Flavor entry at the end of 2017, http://wineandcheesefriday.com/savor-the-flavor/, to showcase some noteworthy wines from the year. We’ve decided to continue the tradition for 2018. One of the ways we were able to really Savor the Flavor this year was by using our Vacu Vin. Have you ever tried these? They are wine vacuums/pumps that suck the air out of the bottle in order to preserve them longer. We were able to keep one of the bottles for two weeks! Can’t say I was ever able to do that in the past. Read More…