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Study shows cheese can make wine taste better

Study shows cheese can make wine taste better


A new scientific study shows that eating cheese may actually increase how much someone likes the wine they are drinking. The study, published in the October issue of the Journal of Food Science, used a new sensory evaluation method and found consuming cheese while drinking wine can make the wine taste better

The study was conducted at the Center for Taste and Feeding Behavior in France with frequent wine and cheese consumers from the city of Dijon.

“Thanks to our research we learned that the duration of the perception of astringency of a certain wine could be reduced after having cheese and that the four evaluated cheeses had the same effect. In short, when having a plate of assorted cheeses, the wine will probably taste better no matter which one they choose,” said lead author Mara V. Galmarini.

In both red wines, the cheeses decreased the duration of dominance of astringency and increased that of red fruits aroma. In the sweet white, the duration of dominance of sweetness was not changed by cheese intake, but in the white dry wine, cheeses had an impact on the main aroma.

Overall, the subjects evaluated four wines (Pacherenc, Sancerre, Bourgogne and Madiran) using a new sensory evaluation method developed by the researchers to show how perception and liking of wine change after cheese intake over several sips, which is closer to what happens in typical consumption. The subjects were given a list of sensations which they used to indicate what caught their attention (called the dominant sensation) as they consumed the wine over three consecutive sips and after they swallowed.

Once the wines were initially evaluated, the task was repeated, but with a piece of cheese eaten in-between sips. Four different cheeses (Epoisses, Comté, Roquefort, Crottin de Chavignol) were sampled over different sessions with each wine.

Follow this simple guide to create delightful wine and cheese pairings for your next gathering, courtesy of Canadian dairy farmers.


BrickBrieCaciocavalloMild CheddarColbyCream CheeseFarmers'Monterey JackNeufchâtelMild Provolone.


Dry white:

Varietal: Chardonnay, Pinot Blanc, Riesling, Sauvignon

Light red:

Region/appellation: Beaujolais, Sancerre, Morgon

Varietal: Gamay, Pinot Noir


Brie Double creamBrie Triple creamCaciottaCamembertCasataMedium CheddarEmmentalFriulanoGoudaHavartiLe CendréLe Clos St-AmbroiseLe DouanierLe MamirolleLe Migneron de CharlevoixMont Saint-BenoîtNoyanPastorellaRacletteSaint-PaulinSt-Pierre de SaurelCanadian SwissMunsterTomme.


Light red:

Varietal: Gamay, Merlot, Pinot Noir

Full-bodied white:

Varietal: Chardonnay (oaked), Gewürztraminer


BleubryBorgonzolaBénédictinErmiteCantonnierOld CheddarEmpereurMirandaOkaSir Laurier d'ArthabaskaLe Providence d'OkaAged ProvoloneVacherinLe Saint-Damase.


Full-bodied or medium red:

Varietal: Cabernet franc, Cabernet sauvignon, Syrah, Zinfandel

Dessert wines:

Icewine, Cider wine, Late harvest


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Okanagan Life captures the essence of life in the Okanagan Valley with informative and entertaining features on issues that matter to people who live or vacation in this great region, plus stories on Okanagan destinations, personalities, wine, food, history, outdoor recreation and more. We're now in our 30th year of publishing. Subscribe

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