Move over, wine-and-cheese; cider-and-cheese is here to stay! With its bright acidity and subtly sweet character, Malus Granny Smith OG live resin-infused cider provides the perfect match for a variety of flavors and textures – and a cheese board is the perfect way to get out there and play with comparing and contrasting flavors!
Neat, Malus is bright, crisp and bubbly, and you should think about flavors that go well with apples when considering making matches. The good news is that apples are very versatile and provide a nicely sweet backdrop to sharp, spicy, and intense flavors with ease.
First, select your cheeses. Look for cheeses in a variety of flavors and textures. This cheese board features:
- An herbal cheddar that offers both a vegetal note and sharpness that stands up to the bright acidity in the Malus
- A creamy brie is rich and decadent, and again, the bright acidity and lively carbonation help lift and cut through indulgent flavors
- Morbier is a slightly sweet, creamy cheese laced with wine grape ash, and is delicate enough to not overpower the cider’s light sweetness
- Smoked goat’s cheese adds a bold smoky flavor that’s lifted by the subtle sweetness in the cider
Then add some fresh and dried fruits, nuts, and crackers: Again, look for a wide variety of flavors, colors and textures. This cheese board features:
- Fresh cherries offer a visual appeal that’s hard to beat, but their sweet juiciness is what really sets them apart. Mix in a few dried cherries for a more intense sweetness.
- Raw almonds and sesame-crusted cashews are two nuts that find their way onto many cheese boards; almonds are rich and dry-nutty, while the sesame-crusted cashews are sweet, crunchy bits that offer an unexpected kiss of honey. Shelled pistachios, Marcona almonds and seasoned pecans make for other good choices.
- Fresh gooseberries are juicy and tart, while dried oranges are sticky sweet; they’re on opposite ends of the flavor spectrum but meet beautifully in the middle.
- Strawberries are the perfect cheese board fruit, and are a wonderful match with Malus’s subtle apple flavor.
- Candied ginger adds an unexpected bite of sweet-spiciness, and ginger and cider are a match made in heaven.
- An assortment of crackers and breads are a must; otherwise, what will you spread your cheese on?
Think of sauces. Honey, aioli, and mustard all make lovely accoutrements. This board features a pepper jelly, which strikes the perfect balance between sweet and heat.
Top it all off with some color. Edible flowers, fresh herbs like mint or rosemary make for beautiful gap-fillers that can keep the eye moving across your cheese board.
Mix and match! The beauty of a cheese board is that there are no wrong answers, as long as you have a good mix of flavors and textures! Of all the items on this board, our favorite bite was the smoked goat cheese atop a pepper-jelly slathered cracker, washed down with a swallow of Malus. What’s your favorite combination?
Be sure to tune in to Instagram Live Thursday June 3 for World Cider Day, when I’ll walk through building one of these boards on Instagram LIVE! Gather your favorite cheeses and a few cans of Malus and join in the fun!