Blanc de Blanc’s Sparkling Wine and St. Andre Cheese
Our wine and cheese pairing this week is a sparkling wine from Trader Joe’s with another soft cheese called St. Andre. Since our last cheese was named after a nearby mountain, I figured I should do a little research on this cheese. I did a quick Google search and found out St. Andre cheese is a specific type of triple cream cheese that has a soft buttery texture, tangy edible rind, and tastes like an intense version of Brie. Thanks Wikipedia, now onto the wine.
This sparkling wine is called Blanc de Blancs, which means there are only white grapes used. Did you know that traditional champagne uses some red grapes but with a method that takes the clear juice out and discards the skins preventing it from turning red?
Neil is always so good at identifying fruit aromas in the wines, he noticed apple and pear while I thought it smelled buttery and kind of stale. During our initial sips it tasted tart, dry, and lemony to me but I didn’t like the smell. Neil found apple and pear flavors also with a brut taste and said it was “pretty good for $4.50!”
When I had Brie in the past I thought it was okay but it’s been fun trying some other soft cheeses. The St. Andre cheese was tart, smooth, creamy, a little funky, and clean. The flavor reminded me of sharp cheddar. Neil thought it was really tart, creamy, and kind of bland. Have the other soft cheeses sounded too intense for you? Maybe this would be a good alternative for you.
The pairing of Blanc de Blancs and St. Andre cheese was pretty interesting. I found the cheese to make the wine more crisp and Neil noticed the wine cutting through the fat of the cheese. We both picked up on the fizziness being magnified and the wine bringing out the funkiness of the cheese. We both enjoyed this pairing.