Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Day Two Eighty - Cab Franc Results

Which New York state cheese won the opportunity to be paired with our Cab Franc this week?

Let's first immediately get to who did not win this week...Contestant Number # 2! Salvatore Brooklyn's Smoky Ricotta although delish, creamy, with that velvety melt in your mouth feel will overwhelm the delicate nuances of the wine -- this is a pairing where it will become ALL about the smoky characteristics of the cheese. You need a bigger drink partner for such a bold cheese -- perhaps a scotch? Something with wood-y undertones to tame the smoky beast. That being said, it is a friendly and fantastic beast just not right with a glass of Cab Franc unfortunately.

So where does that leave us? It is a duel between Mecox Bay's Sunrise and Cooperstown Cheese's Toma Celena!!! Who will have the better chance to win the heart of a glass of Cab Franc this week?

Well folks, it is actually almost a tie for a variety of reasons, you ready for them? And to be very honest, it depends on your taste buds...each will coax out hidden moments in the Cab Franc. So go ahead and try both and let me know your preference, but before you do, let me give you my impression...

The Sunrise will bring to life the earthy and vegetal notes found in a Cab Franc allowing them to sing. It's stinky washed rind creaminess will ideally offset the smoky tobacco flavors to create a lovely flavor melody but should the sunrise be too stinky, it will almost reach the point of overwhelming the wine, which you definitely don't want. That being said, it will be a decent match but a better match for the Sunrise would be a nice IPA or a fuller bodied red wine as this is a big cheese.

Moving onto the Toma Celena whose firmness is a nice opposite to the smooth silkiness of the wine. The buttery, caramelly, nuttiness of the cheese will be an excellent counterpart to the red fruit-y, plum-y notes of the wine and will provide an interesting and if you ask me successful marriage with the oakiness of the wine. Sometimes a bold wine needs a less bold cheese to level it out and I think that in a way that is what the Toma Celena succeeds at doing where as the Sunrise will pit boldness with boldness -- nothing wrong there, just a different taste and flavor explosion, it depends on your preference for wine and cheese pairing.

Enjoy your local wines and cheeses and support your farmers, it helps stimulate the local economy!

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