Pairing Goat Cheese With Wine

The layers of flavor that give goat cheese its complex and sometimes funky character can make pairing wine with goat cheese a challenge. Choosing a wine from the list below will increase the odds of finding a harmonious pairing with goat cheese, one that will show off the flavors of the cheese and the wine.

If in doubt, choose a wine and goat cheese combination from the same region. This natural pairing provides similar taste profiles and showcases the regional variety. 

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    Cheese assortment
    Getty Images/Derek Cooper Photography Inc.

    Sauvignon Blanc is the wine most often chosen to accompany goat cheese and for good reason. The zippy acidity in the wine matches the acidity in the cheese. The combination of sauvignon blanc and goat cheese is fresh and invigorating.

    This classic pairing is also a regional one. France's Loire Valley is famous for both chèvre and the Sauvignon Blanc-based wine Sancerre.

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    Albarino is a white Spanish wine known for its bold acidity and citrusy flavor. It is a crisp, clean wine that can stand up to the tangiest of fresh goat cheeses. Fresh goat cheese tends to be more creamy and the bold wine provides a nice counterbalance to the fresh taste of goat cheese. 

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    Riesling rarely meets a cheese it doesn't like. The wine offers everything from a lush texture and fruit-forward taste, refreshing acidity and a long flavorful finish.

    Fresh goat cheeses with a mellow, milky flavor pair well, as do aged goat cheeses with a harder texture and earthier, floral flavor. Either choice will bring out the floral, fruity taste of the wine. 

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    Choose Chardonnay with a creamy texture (but not too much oak) and refreshing flavors of apples and pears, perhaps a French Macon-Villages, Pouilly-Fuisse or Chablis.

    Serve Chardonnay with aged goat cheeses, such as Spanish Garrotxa or domestic Tumalo Tomme or Sunlight Goat cheese to balance out the rich cheeses and showcase the wine's fruit flavors. 

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    Reach for a bottle of Syrah from Washington state or California, one that has big ripe flavors of ripe summer berries. The lush fruit will mellow out the funky, bitter flavors that some people find overwhelming in soft goat cheese.  If you are looking to add some variety, Syrah can also pair well the sweet, rich flavors of goat gouda or goat cheddar. Look for Midnight Moon or Chevre Noir cheeses to balance well with the boldness of a Syrah.