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Sonoma Market

Sonoma, CA 95476
6 a.m. to 9:30 p.m.
(707) 996-3411

Rhythm & Blues Pairings

chalk board, cheese and wine bottles

Feeling blue isn’t always a bad thing, especially when it comes to cheese. Rich and savory cheeses like Stilton boast a distinct depth of flavor that just might make you rethink what it means to sing the blues. When it comes to pairings, jazz things up with sweet wines like sauternes or port, IPAs or stout, and vodka-based cocktails or sweeter liqueurs. Throw in some honey, fig jam, candied walnuts and hearty, rustic breads, or have fun and improvise.

“R” is for Reyes: Enjoy a blue-ribbon farmstead cheese like Point Reyes Original Blue with a glass of August Kesseler “R” Riesling. This off-dry German wine has a distinct lime acidity and notes of ripe apple and peaches that jive with the bold, salty and tangy flavors of the cheese.

The Blue Mule: Double up on craft creations from the California coast by pairing Point Reyes Original Blue with The Copper Can Moscow MuleThe strong kick of this canned cocktail stands up to this creamy, aged cheese’s layers of intense blue flavor with a nice, clean finish. 

Tried & Blue: For a traditional, time-honored combination, try pairing Deer Creek The Blue Jay with Warre’s Warrior Porto. The dark blue fruits, licorice and milk chocolate flavors of this terrific value port wine marry beautifully with the bold, herbal flavors of this unique quintuple cream blue.

Blue Board of Happiness: Infused with crushed juniper berries, Deer Creek The Blue Jay has a botanical backdrop to its strong blue taste. Balance this ultra-creamy blue with Firestone Nitro Merlin Milk Stout, a grown-up milkshake in a can with a lush, smooth texture from its nitrogen carbonation, and flavors of sweet milk chocolate and roasted coffee. 

Breaking the Mold: Not as salty as American blues, Long Clawson Dairy Blue Stilton has rich, deep and earthy flavors with a browned butter finish. Pair this old English soul with a true blues brother, Château Laribotte Sauternes. Just as blue cheese is famous for its visible veins of edible mold, sauternes wines are known for the flavors imparted by the Botrytis cinerea (“noble rot”) mold that attacks the grapes right before they’re picked. Mold never tasted so good.

Keep the rhythm and blues coming with other cultured classics like Roquefort and gorgonzola.

  • chalk board, cheese and wine bottles