… and it seems the feeling is mutual!
If you’re reading this article, no doubt you enjoy both. But did it ever occur to you to pair products from these two delectable food classes to create a completely new taste treat? They are amazingly delicious when they hit your palate at the same time.
The combination might not be as much of a stretch as you would think. Perhaps on occasion you’ve savored a slice of chocolate cheesecake. Do you remember how wonderful that tasted?
Experiment a bit with the products you like, with the following in mind:
- The salty zing of cheese provides a nice balance to the sweet taste of chocolate.
- Buy the best quality of both that you can afford – it is not the amount of either that should be your consideration, but rather the excellence of the ones you select. Don’t forget that both cheese and chocolate are rich, and you don’t want to overdo it.
- It makes sense to combine darker and heavier chocolates with older cheeses, whereas milk chocolate would be better suited to pairing with a lighter cheese.
Want to know a little bit more about the ingredients behind chocolate?
Here’s an interesting article that breaks down the components of chocolate and explains how ingredients are combined for a taste you can’t help but love…
What’s The Deal With Cocoa Butter?
Here are some suggestions we’ve gathered up for you… but let your own imagination and taste buds guide you.
- Blue cheeses – for example, Bayley Hazen Blue (Jasper Hill Farm) or Plymouth Artisan Cheese‘s Big Blue – pair well with any chocolate containing at least 70%-80% cacao. Good blue cheeses and their sharp taste are a natural complement to a piece of strong, dark chocolate and are also delicious with chocolate truffles and port wine.
- Triple Crème cheeses and Brie go nicely with fruity and spice-flavored chocolates. The fruit or spice will complement the flavor of the bloomy rind!
- Vermont cheddars also pair beautifully with dark chocolate. Add slices of Vermont apple to the plate for another taste sensation.
- Sea-salted chocolate just begs to be plated with Gouda!
- Look for chocolate with a low percentage of cocoa if you’re thinking about serving a Swiss cheese or a Comte.
- If your chocolate preference is for one that contain nuts or spices, serve these with aged cheeses, for instance one of Vermont Creamery’s aged goat cheeses with Vermont Lake Champlain Chocolates’ chocolate covered almonds. (Click here for more cheese and chocolate pairings from Vermont Creamery and Lake Champlain Chocolates.)
It’s all in the taste…
Time to try it out! Invite a few friends to join you for a tasting event. You needn’t try everything at once!
- Consider 3 or 4 different cheese and chocolate combinations.
- Cheese tastes best once it has reached room temperature – so remove it from the refrigerator at least half an hour before you’re ready to serve.
- Make sure that you have plenty of fresh bread or unsalted crackers on hand, plus a pitcher of cold water – all of these will help to cleanse your palate between tastings.
- And try this – take a small piece of chocolate and place it on your tongue; good quality chocolate will melt slowly (it should not be chewed). While the chocolate is dissolving, add a sliver of cheese. The taste combination will delight you.
Want to attend a “cheese and chocolate pairing” event in your area?
In San Francisco – Thursday, November 12th 7-9pm, , 2015 at Dandelion Chocolate 740 Valencia St (at 18th) San Francisco, CA 94110
A tasting exploration of cheese and chocolate pairings! Vagabond Cheese Company will select cheeses to taste with Dandelion chocolates. The class will explore the process and preparation of both cheese and chocolate, play with flavor combinations and texture, and explain the “why” behind the pairings!
In Litchfield, Connecticut – Saturday November 14th 4-6pm, 2015 at Haight-Brown Vineyards 29 Chestnut Hill Rd. Litchfield, CT 06759
A cheese and chocolate… and wine pairing event.
In San Diego – Thursday December 3rd, 2015 at 6:30pm, at Dallmann Fine Chocolate 789 W Harbor Dr Ste 122 San Diego, CA 92101
Cheeses and world-class confections will be carefully selected for a night of “sweet and savory delights”.
Cheese and chocolate. Happy new partners.
Oh, and one more thing!… Sometimes it can be a little difficult to balance the amount of cheese and chocolate in such a way that neither overwhelms the other. We already know that fruit and chocolate are a lovely blend…so if you wish to make your life really easy, you can always try our Blueberry-Chocolate Cheese Companion. We have created this preserve made of wild blueberries with a hint of chocolate, to be paired especially with fresh or aged goat cheeses, like Vermont Creamery’s Bijou, Cremont or Crottin. … And people love it!