Match of the week
Robiola, chestnut honey and sweet vermouth
Vermouth probably isn't the first thing you would think of pairing with cheese but this combination I enjoyed at our local wine bistro Flinty Red in Bristol the other night was just dazzling.
The cheese, a Robiola della Valle Belbo had just been brought back from Piedmont by the chef Matt Williamson along with some chestnut honey that our waiter said had a slightly bitter edge.
We thought it might overwhelm the dessert wines on their list so went for a Moscato-based vermouth, Bonme from a Barolo and Barbaresco producer called Poderi Colla.
In fact the honey was milder than we thought and the cheese quite delicately fresh and moussey but they still worked perfectly with the fragrant, slightly herbal vermouth.
You can read more about riobiolo on Wikipedia and the Bonme on the Poderi Colla website here. Interestingly they recommend it with strong, piquant cheeses, such as natural gorgonzola, or herb- and spice-flavoured cheeses.
If you enjoy vermouth you might also be interested to read my recent Guardian feature here.
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