During December 14 we bought some Montagnolo Affine cheese from Woolworths. I heard the saying that “What grows together, goes together”. There are various ways that this can be interpreted, but for me, it is great to test if this holds true for whisky and regional produce and food. During 2015 I hope to test this with more regional food and whisky pairings. And with this Montagnolo Affine, we got the opportunity to test this theory for the first time: Montagnolo Affine cheese from Germany paired a German Whisky from Bavaria.
Whisky distillation in Germany is a relative recent development and only started in the last 30 years. Today there are many distilleries producing whisky. Slyrs is Bavaria’s first single malt whisky. Built on the banks of Lake Schliersee, it is also the largest whisky distillery in Germany. The Slyrs is a 3 yo whisky, bottled at 43% ABV and matured in American oak. The Slyrs is sold in limited quantities. Our tasting notes on this German whisky made reference to citrus with some oak and spice. There were hints of vanilla, caramel and wood.
Montagnolo Affine is a triple crème soft cheese that is surface ripened and as a result is a marbled texture with blue veins. Made with pasteurized cow’s milk, the Montagnolo Affine has either a grey natural crust or a white mould finish. Apparently it is called ‘the blue cheese for people who don’t like blue cheese’. Montagnolo has rich buttery slightly sweet taste. This creamy soft cheese ripens gradually at low temperatures. Using the so-called cold maturation process, it develops aromatic and spicy flavours.
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Slyrs & Montagnolo Affine whisky cheese pairing
On the inside, the Montagnolo is laced with fine blue cultures that gives it a distinctive, slightly sweet aroma and delicate creaminess. Montagnolo Affine recently won the Supreme Champion award at the 2013 International Cheese Awards. And how did my theory hold up? Is the Slyrs Bavarian Whisky and this German Cheese a match? The theory held up very well actually. The creamy sweet Montagnolo paired wonderfully with the spicy citrus notes of the Slyrs.
The Slyrs broke down some of the creaminess and the cheese smoothed out the few rough edges on this young whisky. A great combination! Consequently, we gave it a RATING: EXCELLENT. The Montagnolo Affine is not a very well known cheese here in South Africa. But this will definitely not be the last time we buy it. It is a delicious soft cheese and a brilliant addition to an exotic cheese board. Have you tried this yet?
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