Canadian Cheese & Apple Drinks
Winter is the perfect occasion for all-time favourite fare: apple drinks and Canadian cheese. It’s a true Canadian classic.
In the spirit of modern, light-hearted entertaining, why not consider exploring the range of local apple alcoholic beverages for a refreshing change.
Over the years, Canada’s apple growers have been busy concocting delicious apple beverages that all pair well with Canadian cheese. Try some of these delightful combinations.
Apple cider – also known as hard cider, has a light to medium body, but retains a strong apple flavour, ending with a tangy note. Pair with Medium or Aged Canadian Cheddar; also perfect with Raclette or any washed rind cheese. Serve in a beer glass, mug or stein.
Sparkling cider – an effervescent hard cider also called Mousseux or Crémant. Look for festive bottles like for sparkling wine, strings of bubbles ascending and the aroma of apples. Non-alcoholic versions exist called Moût de pomme (apple must). It is a healthy and much appreciated substitute to the usual sodas. Sparkling cider is a natural pairing with Canadian Brie or Camembert. The apple and milky flavours play off each other while the luxurious fizz and the creamy cheese texture thrill the tongue. Serve in a Champagne flute.
Fortified cider & ice cider – Fortified cider is similar to Port; a hard cider blended with apple brandy. Ice cider is similar to ice wine; the apples are left on the tree until the early winter, making the natural sugars in the apple become more concentrated, thus creating a sweet and fruity drink. Both are sweet drinks that pair well with a salty Canadian Blue. They also make a great combination with a nutty cheese, like Aged Gouda. Try serving dried apples or dates on the side as a chaser. Serve in a pony (small beer) glass.
Apple brandy – also known as Eau de Vie, it is a distilled apple wine (like Calvados) and has a big, bold and warming flavour. You need a strong cheese to stand up to this flavour: big bold blues, smoked cheeses, even smoked blue cheeses and four-to-eight-year Aged Cheddar cheeses all work well, taming the edge of alcohol and drawing out the nuances. Add roasted walnut halves on the side to enhance the flavour. Serve in a brandy snifter.
How to put it together – A dark coloured wood platter or cutting board will set off your light coloured cheeses and add to the rustic feel of the season. Use three cheeses for eight people or less, and five cheeses for more than eight people.
TRY THIS RECIPE
Apple & Caramel Dessert Sandwich
Imagine! Sweet apples cooked in caramel, served warm over a Havarti cheese sandwich made with slices of angel food or pound cake. A comforting and distinctive treat you can serve for dessert or during a weekend brunch.GET THIS RECIPE