Chef’s note: The Throsby is an intimate wine bar, with a diverse and ever-changing wine list. There is no better way to enjoy a selection of wines than paired with a selection of cheeses. The following is an instructional by Maddie and Eric, owners of The Throsby, on how to create the perfect wine and cheese pairings.
Selecting cheeses – when putting together a cheese board, it’s very important to have variety. Some guests may prefer some types of cheese over others, and if you’re going to try several different wines, the way they pair with different cheeses makes the experience more exciting. When choosing cheese, aim for a variety of textures: soft, bloomy rind, semi-hard or aged cheese, as well as a variety of milks like cow, sheep, goat, buffalo, or a combination. At the end of the day, it’s about quality not quantity. Select a few quality cheeses, rather than many mediocre ones.
Honey – The Throsby’s customers are always surprised to see honey served on our cheese boards, but a sweet drizzle is the perfect contrast to the saltiness of cheese. It’s best paired with triple creams and blue.
Fruits – when choosing fruit, always remember that whatever is in season will taste best. In summer, try grapes or berries, and in winter, opt for pears or quince.
Breads and crackers – we serve a few different types of breads and crackers on our cheese boards. Try different combinations of fruit and nut bread, sourdough, wholegrain crackers and grissini. A multitude of flavours and textures keeps things interesting.
Wine – when it comes to cheese and wine pairing, we don’t believe in hard and fast rules. Some of the best wine in Australia comes from winemakers who have tossed the rule book out the window, and that’s kind of exciting to us. However, the cheese and wine should be on an equal playing field. A delicate cheese should be paired with a delicate wine, and a cheese with intense flavours should be paired with something robust. If you need some inspiration, try some of our favourite pairings:
Soft, fresh goat’s cheese – 2017 Bondar Grenache Rose from McLaren Vale.
Triple cream – 2016 Collector ‘Lamp Lit’ Marsanne from Murrumbateman.
Pecorino or Manchego – 2013 Denton View ‘DM’ Nebbiolo from the Yarra Valley.
cheese selection (from left)
parmesan/cheddar washed in merlot
cow’s milk, Wisconsin, USA
blue cheese, sheep’s milk
sheep’s milk, Rhone Alps, France
Yarra Valley Dairy Black Savourine
goat’s milk, Yarra Valley Australia
fruit & nut bread