Pairing Sparkling Wine with Cheese

A night filled with sparkling wine and yummy cheeses sounds a bit like heaven, right? With this handy guide, learn which cheeses pair best with sparkling wine, and which sparkling wines are best for pairing with cheese.

I’m partnering with the Oregon Dairy and Nutrition Council this holiday season to celebrate dairy’s essential role in festive celebrations. Dairy foods like milk, cheese, yogurt, butter, and more are key ingredients in many recipes, including this delicious cheese and sparkling wine pairing.

Which dairy product is your favorite to cook with during the holiday season?

Oregon has such a wide variety of cheeses to choose from, including cheddar, fromage blanc, goat cheese, and blue cheese.  So, I thought it would be fun to pair Oregon cheeses with Oregon sparkling wines! 

What cheeses pair with sparkling wine?

You can choose a wide variety of cheeses to pair with sparkling wine. Creamy cheeses, nutty cheeses, earthy cheeses. Just try to avoid any overly pungent cheeses, like big bold blue cheeses or limburger. 

  • Hard dry cheeses (swiss, parmesan) – These mild, nutty cheeses are begging to be paired with a wine with high acidity and persistent bubbles. Look for a dry sparkling wine like Planet Oregon’s Pinot Noir Rosé Bubbles. 
  • Creamy cheeses (goat cheese, fromage blanc, brie-style) – Cheeses with a high butterfat that coats your mouth are best paired with a refreshing sparkling wine.The acidity cuts through the creaminess and salt and makes for such a fun pairing. Look for a brut sparkling wine like Sokol Blosser’s Bluebird Cuvée. 
  • Earthy cheeses (gorgonzola, blue) – These aromatic cheeses pair best with yeasty, sparkling wines. Look for a dry brut like Argyle’s Brut Rosé.

How to assemble a cheese board to pair with sparkling wine: 

Step 1:

Choose your board

  • You can make your board as small or as big as you’d like. For our date night at home, I kept things small with a small wooden serving tray.

Step 2:

Choose your cheeses

  • My method of attack is generally to choose two or three cheeses of varying types. For example, a soft cheese, a hard cheese and a pungent cheese. 

Step 3:

Add your accompaniments

  • Crackers, Chips, Bread – I love to serve up my cheeses with crackers or homemade crostini
  • Charcuterie – I added in a couple spiced sausages from local Oregon producer, Olympia Provisions. 
  • Fresh Fruits – Go with what’s in season. Oranges, pomegranate, apples, pears. 
  • Dried Fruits – Cherries, apricots, apple slices. 
  • Olives – The salty combination is amazing with bubbles. 
  • Nuts – I had to go with local Oregon hazelnuts here, of course!
Cheese board arranged next to glasses of sparkling wine.

Fun Facts: 

  • Oregon is home to nearly 180 dairy farms that supply milk for a variety of dairy products. Milk is local, so if you are in the Oregon area, you are likely enjoying milk from local farms.
  • When you enjoy dairy products, you are supporting dairy farm families that have been part of our local communities for generations. Top-notch animal care and a commitment to leaving their land and natural resources better than they found them are essential components in the management of these multi-generational farms. To learn more about Oregon dairy farms or visit one, visit the Oregon Dairy and Nutrition Council’s website.

Cheese Nutrition: 

  • In addition to tasting delicious, cheese is a fermented food packed with protein and is naturally nutrient dense. Cheese and other dairy foods are an essential part of healthy diets for people of all ages.
  • Those that are lactose intolerant can still enjoy some dairy foods, including lactose-free milks, hard cheeses and yogurts. Hard cheeses naturally have little lactose and can be easier on the stomachs of those with lactose intolerance.

More cheese board ideas:

Cheese board arranged next to glasses of sparkling wine.

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