Grilled Cheese Sandwiches & Wine Pairing

For the classic Grilled cheese sandwich, a rich Chardonnay is going to go well with the buttered up toast. Chardonnay uses oak which often gives it a toasty and buttery flavour, so when you pair that up with a grilled cheese sandwich, you’re going to have a pretty delicious combination. However, you aren’t limited to white wines with Grilled Cheese Sandwiches. Fruity and acidic red wines like Pinot Noir, Zinfandel, Chianti and Beaujolais are all fantastic parings with this gooey and toasty treat.

Grilled Cheese Sandwich

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If you love to drown your grilled Cheese in ketchup, this red sauce is going to overpower the subtle flavours of a well-crafted Chardonnay. For this reason, I would choose a red Zinfandel. Zinfandel isn’t overly tannic, and it has a touch of sweetness to it. Thus it will stand up against the acidic and sugary ketchup.

Zinfandel is going to rip through the saltiness of this dish as well, making the match quite refreshing.

If you decide to toss some bacon strips into your cheesy masterpiece, a Pinot Noir or Beaujolais will bode well for your taste buds. These two reds are light and refreshing against the saltiness of the bacon and Cheese in this dish. If I were to pick between the two, I’d select a more complex Pinot Noir for dinner time and the lower in alcohol Beaujolais for lunch.

Grilled Cheese, Tomato Soup & Wine

If the classic tomato soup is accompanying your grilled Cheese. A Chianti or a Rosé wine will make for a fine pairing. Both wines are high enough in acid so the tomato soup won’t taste flat or metallic when paired with them. Chianti has just enough tannin to go great with the proteins in the Cheese. While a Rosé will be refreshing against the fat and grease of the grilled Cheese.

Wine Pairings and Gourmet Grilled Cheese Sandwich

The re-imagining of Grilled Cheeses has become a popular item at restaurants. You might see grilled cheese sandwiches made using Gouda cheese, artisan sourdough breads, stilton cheese, or even cheese made from nuts. Some grilled cheeses may have granny smith apples on them, red onions, basil, and pulled pork. We recommend consulting our food and wine pairing database to best pair up these flavours.

Beer & Grilled Cheese Pairings

Beer and Cheese make a great pairing, as the saltiness of cheese balances out the bitterness (from the hops) of beer. That’s why we often eat salty things such as pretzels, peanuts and other bar snacks with beer. Thus, that’s why we’d pair beers that lean on the bitter side with grilled cheese sandwiches. Even if you don’t like bitter beer, like an India Pale Ale (IPA), you’ll find that the Cheese mellows out the flavour of the beer, creating a fantastic combination.

For your basic grilled cheese sandwich, any lager or ale will go great. As you amp up the flavours, or add heavier cheeses, that’s when you want to up the beer level to an IPA or a Brown Beer.

If you’re going the distance and using a strong cheese like stilton cheese or adding bacon, a malty beer, such as a Barley wine will go great. The earthy and nutty malt flavours will match up with the bacon and Cheese, while the sweetness of a barley wine will provide a contrast. Barley wine is high in alcohol and moderate in carbonation so that it will cut through the fat and Cheese.

Meanwhile, if the grilled cheese sandwich, uses lighter cheeses, such as goat cheese, or white cheddar, a lighter beer may be appropriate like a wheat beer or Pilsner. A heavier beer would crush the subtle flavours of lighter cheeses.

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