Two matches for the price of one this week - both killer pairings at our Christmas Cheese School* last week.
The Maury 1974 ( £19.49 for 50cl. Averys), a fortified grenache made in a solera system like sherry was perhaps the more obvious pairing for the Stichelton, an unpasteurised version of Stilton. It had a similar warm, spicy berry character to a vintage port but at 17% was a little lighter. Delicious.
On the other hand the Glenlivet Cask Stout, one of a limited edition bottling of stouts brought out for Christmas by the Bristol Beer Factory, was just as good. A wickedly rich, dark smooth 10.7% imperial stout with a lovely touch of sweetness it was the perfect contrast to the creamy Stichelton.
I really like the idea of finishing Christmas dinner with a beer like this but if you think your nearest and dearest will rebel buy yourself a good imperial stout this week and treat yourself.
* Cheese School is joint enterprise I set up with local Bristol cheesemakers and mongers Todd and Jess Trethowan to offer cheese-focused events and all day courses for those who want to learn more about cheese.