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Celebrate spring with Champagne and Cheese pairings
April 2010

Champagne is noted for its association with holidays and commemorative events - but you don’t need a special occasion to indulge with the bubbly and fine fromage.

Don’t hesitate to celebrate the minor occasions of everyday life as well. Popping a bottle of champagne for no reason at all can be more fun and just as memorable as sipping a glass of the bubbly on New Year’s Eve.

So celebrate spring, or, better yet - simply toast the first day of the rest of your life with the sweet, crisp taste of champagne and the delicieux flavor of French fromage!

Try these celebratory pairings and celebrate spring – and our love of cheese – in style. A la votre!

Ile de Brie France cheese with a light and fruity champagne

Ile de France recommends: Nicolas Feuillatte Blue Label Brut

The famous smooth creaminess of our Brie Cheese makes the perfect pair with a crisp, fruity champagne. The Blue Label Brut fits the bill – its packed with fruit undertones, especially pear and apple flavors. The fresh acidity of the wine will cut through the delicious brie cheese, making each bite a new experience.

Added elegance – Serve some fresh apple slices and sliced French bread to bring all the harmonious flavors together.

Ile de France goat cheese with a full-bodied, rich champagne

Ile de France recommends: Gosset Grande Réserve

Ile de France Goat Cheese features a fresh yet mild tangy flavor. The refreshing taste of the goat cheese calls for a strong, robust champagne that packs a deep aroma and a long-lasting taste that isn’t overpowered by the fromage. The golden-hued Grande Réserve has an intense flavor that is not complex and provides the perfect backdrop for Ile de France goat cheese. It packs flavors hints of fig, cherries and later, an almond taste to go along with its roasted scents.

Added elegance – honey-glazed roasted almonds are the perfect snack to go along with this cheese and wine combination.

Fol Epi with a nutty flavored champagne

Ile de France recommends: Krug Grande Cuvee

Fol Epi is a classic snacking cheese that is rich in both flavor and protein. Since the fromage has a creamy and exceptionally smooth profile, it provides a perfect natural pair for the crisp carbonated sweetness of champagne and sparkling wines. Try Fol Epi with a champagne that has a nut aroma and hints of roasted flavors to complement Fol Epi’s own nut flavor tones.

Added elegance: Serve some mini ham and Fol Epi sandwiches with your nutty champagne and you’ll have a hearty snack to accompany any occasion.

St. Agur with an ultra sweet and light pink champagne

Ile de France recommends: Veuve Clicquot Rose

Blue cheese is often best enjoyed with a contrasting flavor – making sweet champagne a delicious pair for any blue cheese. St. Agur is a buttery blue cheese that will contrast and compliment any pink champagne. Sweet, airy and crisp, a pink champagne will cleanse your palette in between every bit of St. Agur, which is more mild than many blues and has a creamy texture that is a natural choice to serve with champagne.

Added elegance: Serve a light salad featuring St. Agur and a glass of pink champagne as the first course at your next dinner party. Guests will instantly be in a festive mood.

Champagne fun facts

If it’s not from France, it isn’t champagne. Unless it is made in the Champagne region of France, east of Paris, using the method champenoise (traditional champagne making processes) international agreements specify it isn’t champagne and must be called sparkling wine.

Champagne originally gained its celebratory luster because it was used in ceremonies involving French Kings. Other countries took notice, and soon champagne was associated with royalty and festivals. Eventually, festive occasions and luxurious living became permanently associated with champagne around the world.