EPISODE 8

Matching Cheese with Brandy : Tuesday Night is Cheese Night #11 with Charlie Turnbull

BROADCAST ON 16th June 2020 - 8.00PM
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#TNCN with Charlie Turnbull & Dhruv Baker talk pairing cheeses brandy and charcuterie Cheese up for consideration are Beaufort, Mimolette, Roquefort and maybe a very old musty Montgomery cheddar heavy on the base notes.

 

 

Episode Video Transcript 

Good evening it's Tuesday it's Cheese Night. Welcome all you lovely people there again it's always a pleasure to take time out of my busy schedule and talk cheese to the wonderful Internet and I hope you are all enjoying yourself I hope you have got a little bit brandy I hope you've got a little bit cheese to taste. If not I have my favorite brandy specialist here Dhruv, he’s not actually technically a brandy specialist but I have seen him consume so much brandy that if he's not there by pure dint of volume consumption I don't know who deserves title.

So let's go and find him  Dhruv are you there I am indeed Sully hello you you look like you've had quite day is that food it's been a long all day Charlie we've been as most of my life is this day it's at a slicing machine slicing charcuterie and packing it into 50 or 75 gram packs which as it turns out can become quite boring no really mmm I lied not so um I don't know if everybody knows this but you started your brand with Tom two years ago making sure countries okay three coming to you three now yes in its infancy we we set up temporal charcuterie we you know we built a site we started doing our thing we kind of been perfecting or fine-tuning it and then the kind of world called fire and the pandemic was sort of front and center and we've had to kind of readapt the business and restructure it to sort of change the the way we sell the product obviously not what we do and that's that's proven to be quite challenging in terms of ours but you know the survival of the business is the key and so yes it does change the way things are but Billy strips me busy right you know I mean he got a bit it was the other end of the spectrum which a lot of people position so you know I'm not really complained it's it's different but it's busy and it's you know we just have to make the most of the situation really I mean I don't want it I don't want to dwell on it we want to get on some cheese and brandy but three people and a lot of your self service which has collapsed correct yeah overnight kind of lost all the restaurants which was a large proportion of what we do so we we vary as a small business we're able to be quite nimble and actually readapt and refocus and and redo divert and resources we'd furloughed all our products we stopped production and then we just kind of used the stock we had in our aging room to kind of get us through and now we're looking at bringing people back on furlough one person we've already done that we're doing that with the other so by the end of a little dude all of us stuff will be back to work that is awesome news those fantastic news yeah you know and and the pigs too and the PC well the pins are less excited right well let's let's let's let's drink drinking way does that work worse to me Tyler you know me all right so have you got both bottles the nice people at st. remy have sent us some some some food they have all right so you this is this is the beauty of social distancing they've had to send us one each which is there because one possibly wouldn't be enough between and what's the other one I've got an XO three bottles you've got there this is the cask finish collection which I've just written quite complex and Oh fantastic um well okay well you're the boss um let's get a bit brief about brandy so French brandy comes in three styles right just French brandy which is across the country and then we have cognac and Armagnac which are terroir base tearing down the Sherrod correct prior to my rudimentary knowledge I also believe that Armagnac is distilled twice and cognac three times I might be wrong you know I think there might also be a great varietal element to play as well yeah and you know I just approached straight off the bat I've got to say unless expert than enthusiastic I'll take the rolls yeah no I remember going down to Antioch in my youth and the big takeaway canoes that swell the casks the wood you know that kind of amazing right and I think it's one of those drinks I think people can find quite intimidating and because there is a lot of flavor packed into it and it can you know if you you're not used to spirits it can kind of almost over deliver and kind of overwhelm the senses so I think you know trying to sort of break it down into slightly smaller bite-sized chunks to kind of digest so that's he pairing it with cheese is a really good way of doing it in a way to make it less kind of front and center and slightly less intimidating and so for the average person out there perhaps he hasn't drunk brandy before do you water it down you add coca-cola what's what's the implicit I mean for me it's it's as is I drink it straight I drink it at room temperature because I want you know I don't need to deliver what something watered-down cold it's definitely not for me a kind of long tall refreshing drink it's something that's pondered and taken your time over that's one of those things where after a long meal after a long day actually that kind of feeling you take your shoes off you sit down on the sofa you sit back it's been quite an overwhelming day and you just want to kind of almost read focus all of your senses a glass of cognac is Idealab us a brand new is brilliant because there's so much going on the so much complexity that it almost kind of disengages that part of your brain and you then start focusing on that and you start sort of pick up nuances of different flavors and actually once you've got over that initial shock of the condom your first if you kind of just guide and have a big gulf between having will demo I think it's time for demo isn't it which much we start with  Dhruv let's start with the VSOP okay so I'm getting a sort of a whiny caramel no tumblers for this and you can by all means if you've got big balloons use those but we're gonna do is have a swirl of it and don't if you've not never drunk brandy before don't shove your nose into it and breathing deeply because all you're gonna get is a hit of alcohol fumes and that's you're gonna think wow this is just alcohol fumes give it a little swirl and then hold it maybe four to six inches under your nose and that's you just start to get waft but behind the alcohol you'll start to pick up this kind of orange to me there's a bit of citrus is okay yeah again and that arrangement view a little bit of them as you get closer to it now that initial kind of shock that initial wave of the boo genus has come and dissipated mm-hmm there is this orange peel this caramel to me there's a kind of bit of vanilla yeah no definitely no there's a lovely kind of ruby extract that kind of vanilla that's still on them and I think we there's a lot of similarities with whisky here because you've got the I mean it's in that that punch level of 40% parts there is the flavors rolling behind it so I like and that's my sort of go-to really yeah but yeah I think it's um it is it is if you're a whiskey drinker this is it'll be ideal because you're not sort of scared off by that huge bluesy kick but the other thing you get with with good grandi is there's a texturally it's kind of not oily but it's it sort of coats your palate it feels sort of thicker and richer and it's it's also there's a bit more sweetness to it as well not going I want to try something I was drinking kale the other day with a professional mezcal drinker as you do yeah and what they recommended you do if you put a little on your hand like that yeah rub your hand this is not a coated moment it's not code monkey but it allows the alcohol to burn off a bit even latest flavor to come to come throughout so still quite a lot but it is the flavors become more a bigger part of the experience after doing this right so that's introduced assuit so it's a punchy drink with a with what we're talking fruits we talking vanilla I think there's a wood eveness to it there is definitely kind of but it's like cedar it's kind of that kind of really smell it to me and you know there is a smokiness but there is there's there's more but it'll evolved and it'll change and actually as you sit there as the alcohol evaporates there's more and more flavors going to come off there and come out of that and it will change an evolvement the other thing is there's no wrong answers if you smell apples or lemons it's so subjective well that's something that very much we teach at the academy or cheese is that learning to interpret any theta whether it's an alcohol like this or a teas is accessing it through your experience and you think your reservoir of knowledge to give it a direction so so I mean right hesitate I mean like I've done tastings with whiskey with gin with vodka with rum Keibler even doesn't look really the Chaney's and and the issue one point is early hit about cold and not the point where you just know you're not getting it yeah I agree on and when we spoke about this that was our initial concern is that hey how do we do this because if you you know for wine for instance you wouldn't struggle at all if you're the mouth achieved a take a slurp of wine that would work you know I think here if you've got them going concurrently I think it can overpower and especially when we go up the scale of the cheese's we've got I'm guessing you're going to introduce what we're going to be tasting cheese wise but when you get to the punter end of the profile if you have a mouth without cheese the slurp of of that of that brandy you'd almost certainly overwhelm your palate and and I think the result probably wouldn't be particularly pleasant so I think it's a case of echoes of both as you enjoy both not necessarily washing one down ping pong moment goat cheese go brandy go cheese you're grounded exactly exactly what is sweet what should we take off the Charlie hello peacock I've got the four cheese's you've got three and we wanted to get something with a with a sweet mint and I've had to pull out a bit of the SOP got it and we've got Montgomery's cheddar with nearly no sweetness in it to a savory salty crayons yeah yeah we've got Bo for the French arguably the best friend Appetit very orderly and we've got rock full Whitney is a wild card you're you're not seeing result there do you think that's an outsider I think that sided but the beauty I love I love to have my initial instinct proved wrong because then ultimately you end up with another pairing you normally might not necessarily have tried no actually when it comes to this take a risk roll the dice you know what's the worst that's gonna happen you're not gonna enjoy it but you might find something exceptional yes you did right we're gonna have a quick moment to talk about what and how matching works right yeah there are there's a theory that matching can be lovers friends or enemies okay so friends is wearing the to drink in your mouth they don't interrupt each other they just stare comes with a beer Scotian distant neighing and there when you get the full flavor of each they don't interrupt great answer that is if you've got choose modify over six cheese's because drinking is a friend of the cheese can be more powerful than one that is going to make friends as it's going to really disgrace on Jesus and others then you have enemies where cheese and wine is really disagree with each other bring up the worst in each other they exacerbate Pizza nurse or bring out what my odds favor or something like that and lovers is where the two products in your mouth produce a new blender flavor that is superior to most and that is what we are erecting Lukas although I'm quite happy with blend which is at the end of the night a nice bottle of brandy and treats Peters is a result absolutely so so do you do you have a view I mean if you would impart on this of a golden rule of go for the same terroir how do you look for matching what is what is maddening if you're trying to predict Ned so first thing I'm never had I've never paired brandy and cheese before I think what are the general characteristics of both things that you're trying to do and generally speaking I think in most people's sort of experience of matching you'll tend to be wine with food you know they'll say we're having a dinner party what why should we choose with the stars in the main and you know historically used to be white you fish red with red meat and you know that's obviously come a long way and evolved a lot of people are now experimenting with dessert wines and using dessert wines to go with starters so you think you know foie gras with the Sauternes is a match made in heaven that is there an example right there of lovers you know in people say red wine with cheese I personally think a sweet wine like a Sauternes is a better partner with most cheese's and so I think think about things that you like what it will not do is if this neighbors that you just definitely don't like pairing them won't make them probably won't make you love them so stick to the areas of what you like then thinking of one of the general flavor profiles one of the characteristics if you've got a very sweet wine chances are you don't it to be so so very sweet in itself so you want the degree of contrast as well so you need similarities but you also need contrast for them to really sort of gel and mess the way that we structure it when we talk about cheese is we split flavors into simple flavors which are your sweet salty aspeed bitter and savory the mouth flavors and your complex flavors which all that stuff can happen to know your herbs or spices and ah technical rule of thumb as in this is a good guide start with is you want to balance out your sweet are your simple flavors so it's nothing has a little salt you want mmm but in the complex grade which you do often want to have a bridge and over that for a little bit of mushroom and or something spring 3/9 outcomes those augment in complex flavors and balance informal flavors that's the role of thumb that we wings were you and I think what you just said Charlie about you know you're obviously sour bitter it's that step back which is the kind of floral notes the mushroom that's the cardamom armies all of the kind of nuances which is where they're the real magic begins that kind of little fizz starts to kind of gurgling you when you find the right pairing and it's not that kind of obvious initial basic flavors but it's it's under the Emily's in the beak New York's ISM and another flavors that are over secondary but that's where the real kind of magic lies I think okay let's go to work which one do you want to do first I'm tempted to say the Beaufort actually alright that's good I've been nibbling on the rock for and it's utterly delicious I have a rooftop Madras board that's and by the way it needs lenient thank you so much to find cheese company again providing our cheese's these are in awesome condition they did a really good job at that of doing Street images online cell sorry point cheese company yes very really thank you pretty much but you know the injustice elector that I've never had a cheese from fine cheese company that hasn't been absolutely perfect and it shows that the real monarch of the phenomenal cheese monger of it that know when to send stuff out you know to use can be over when they come and it's having that expertise in-house of how do we keep these cheeses how do we keep maturing and and rate controlled enough for us to send them out when they're buying them and actually that Beaufort is stunning as all the other cheeses we have ever had and regularly get from the fine cheese company are you a regular user Miami regular user and they are one of our supplies they are one of our templates caucus one of our very best partners lovely so you love them they love you well I can certainly say I love them I could possibly speak for them but right right another top tip for taste is out there put the food in before the drink otherwise you dribble just this small thing then that's just a general rule for eating as well isn't it charlie mm-hmm and oh talking it now Charlie are you still on the I've opened both now because I'm getting curious I and and you know I'm a more is more kind of guy so I thought that I would just bring it on and you just just UFAs open versus that the XO you can see the color difference there is really quite substantial I'm out but you know what that VSOP Wow I think it's it's it kind of elevates it it kind of there's that there's a bit more kind of honey it's kind of accentuated the sweet notes there's but it's not quite treacle it's not as far gone as as caramel or honey as treat this more kind of honey this lore ality which you didn't get prior to the cheese and almost when you've got something that's quite you mommy which that Beaufort has it well something savory and sweet so you can put I think miso miso works with sweets as well as savory and actually what it's doing for me is really enhancing those sweet notes in that VSOP I'm I'm agreeing what you said going after that I think it's depressing the dairy I think I'm getting left cream notes left milk notes yeah and I would describe it it's becoming more spicy but spicy enough food sense rather than alcohol you know what I mean that kind of kind of moment I'm just gonna say it's sort of making all those top notes seems have gone they sort of lacked a little elastic stuff has gone from the bocal and you damnable mellow territory yeah everything's become a bit more too smooth and silky and it's a bit deeper and and I actually love it I genuinely love it I think what you're getting there is not better or worse but different we're getting a new experience that push okay I think I think that the silkiness that you're talking about that much softer woody flavor honey knows at the expense of the dairy of the cheese's but those are flavors that you will enjoy completely draw dinner meals learned they are end of meal kind of like the like it like like a truffle like a like a brandy truffle at the end of it it's not chocolate chocolate cheese truffle yeah but you're not be interesting if you you serve this you know you could serve that both or quite happy news with a glass support Tony or a glass of sin but you could also serve it with that brandy and the the net result is completely different from the tea's not just the pairing alright let's do dis to Jamie okey dokey right now the reason I brought this in is because this is quite a punchy cheese on the British in the British canon but it's got no sweetness and I wanted to see how the Brandi Williams on that basis I mean I don't wanna be rude but I think crashes and burns with which brandy oh the the XO hmm well what yet with the episode actually not it's accentuated that alcohol spike it's kind of all these kind of nasal and it's actually making the cheese taste very salty yeah it's knocking out the blotter the complexity out of that out of the brandy yeah the savory is just hanging on by the skin of its teeth all the complexity of the monomer is done and and it's just making the worst of the brandy real years that said if there's a lot better with the VSOP than the XO let's go okay so less of a train crash correct mm-hmm I don't even think we're in crash territory here you like it um I don't find unpleasant the via the XO and the Montgomery all of the pods of batteries are both kind of knock each other out mmm no I'm not I'm not going there no I think this could be a good example of a stay level and the brandy IBM quizzically be sold in this country and be very tasty but it's not ending it all yep okay right um right so you said you've been nibbling at this all day Tolly no all day for about the last hour waiting for you to find a computer where the microphone was now straight off the bat my concerns that I had before today just by tasting the Roquefort have been enhanced and multiplied tenfold so you're very concerned I am I mean you know when you talk about with Perry's you're looking for the the sort of friends and lovers ideally where is something that's greater than some of the parts my the opposite of that obviously when you're talking about enemies is you end up with two things that you love deeply there you end up momentarily disliking intensely that moment we've three friends of yours very close friend of yours but they've never met and you think University friends school friends put them together they always hate each other oh yeah because they eat you know whatever the reasons but so I'm gonna try the cheese again because we've probably talked about the cheese before we do any tasting of the so this brandy is distilled and produced up on the lavash quite a lot higher than where it's coming from my taste for a good rock for is I'd like to press against the top palate and have it momentarily resist and then break through all of your mouth this wonderful spice beam cheap snow flavor yeah honestly one of the best waffles right patch but there's so much going on with that that anything you want to pair with that I think would have to play second fiddle it would have to play support to it something that would work with it because it's so big and bold and intensely full of well the savoriness there's a bit of spiciness in there and you know I want with that something sweet I want sweet wine a dessert wine I'd quite like a pause toward airport well we just tried Randy with blue cheese crashing tone so you think it's not going to work Alison just tried and it doesn't work we have professional requirements try it no no I said I said to express general what is doing a bitterness is coming out of nowhere all of a sudden then there's a bitterness and the metallic quality which I don't like okay for me that is a lot better than the cheddar brandy combination I'm not being bashed back against the wall by that at you described alcohol spike what it's doing for me is it's making the brandy creamy which is not unpleasant I'm enjoying allowing the Roquefort to be all that it can be but that was the SOP wasn't it not the episode all right well let's go with the exone this is what I'm more concerned about and that's it's not brilliant and you're right the that interesting the VSOP is met the match of the two relatively correct within this context and and I think you'd expect that because there's less complexity to it there's less character to it it will work with more things in some harmony of them whereas whereas the episode is by nature more complex it's got a lot more going on so you've got more elements trunking combined which is unlikely to happen we're saying so so that so the the XO wants to be the boss of the room it wants to be the loudest person the funniest jokes that kind of stuff whereas the VSOP is can be more diminutive sit more comfy with other people and in that sense it's got a better chance of allowing the rock for to shine okay I'm assuming German mm I think so and I think that's what happens that you know if you have a top chef come cook you buy frozen yeah no I can't a freezing I think you know you when you fight you we just want wanted and complicated a dish you're the the Drake para Lenny here to to sort of work with it as opposed to clash with it okay so I've got one more cheese here um which you don't have in front me but I'm gonna go with this it's the Gowda I specifically wanted this because I thought it weakness was the strongest sweetener I want to destroy it so the other end of the spectrum from from the cheddar we're gonna need a little bit more than that well Charlie you're showing off in your fourth cheese I'm gonna show my third brandy because I've been Remy's cask finish collection which is aged in Cabernet Sauvignon course and it's even darker still mm-hmm it's interesting I'm gonna tell you what I'm getting with it with a gala um the gala is like a rock and the tide just doesn't reach the top of the rock so it just tries to be dominant and then it washes back your mouth deals with powder again so I'm from a cheese point of view the powder is the one sheet here that dominates the brandy all the others Brandon pink and I think from a perfect match point of view that Beaufort has the most interesting outcomes our degree Oh degree that is that is interesting and sorry we've tasted three cheese's but I suspect if we tried stuck at this with more cheeses and different styles we would find some real winners so you know I was a bit skeptical when we discussed this initially and I said look I'd love to be proved wrong but but shown that there is merit and I think we've shown that there is definitely reasons and grounds to explore this further Parmesan or you know a young sheep cheese or I think what we've established is that it's definitely not one to rule out that brandy cognacs and cheese is a thing and I think could well yield some real real good pairings I very much enjoy the time you would do that right because it's sitting there at ten ten o'clock eleven thirty plus time a night you're interested in having good conversation challenging conversation the other words you people you know I think this is time than we think Brandis your second yeah something a little bit different you know it's I mentioned this a few people said oh you know Charlie and I are doing a a brandy and cheese pairing and they color well that's unusual I've never thought about so be cheese with brand you're pairing cheese with brandy so it actually starts that discussion and then you know ultimately it's no different to pairing any other food product with a drink what you know why is it different to charcuterie and wine or beer and and cheese or any other parent that we've done it's just slightly less unusual any more unusual but maybe because less people drink brandy or Connie I don't know but but I'm intrigued enough to definitely spend more time and effort okay so one little homework here yeah basically all I'm saying it's been quite a long time since we've had a good tin wagging a few drinks I think this is very definitely want more yeah no I I do think that I mean what about what about charcuterie do you think charcuterie and brandy is a thing I think again my instinct would be to say no because the the level of alcohol and the sort of punchiness of flavor I think would actually be a bit of a bully and I'm wrong a lot of the charcuterie I think you'd have the funny interplay between the fat in the alcohol what have you added to that just water yeah I mean it should work like a whiskey and that when you add whiskey water to a single malt you open it up and a lot more breath of those kind of flavours comes out P&O Cruises and I and I was doing this presentation on matching British achieves British peers very much a dog I mean there was a Scotsman there who was active in matching with with uses and the viewlet 33% alcohol as in about quarter one more for whiskey what's the best road show me it's about lunch then the flavors really break open they do if you imagine all of those flavors compress onto a pinhead and you put that pin in your mouth Middleton compress to try and access them but you made that pinhead the size of a boiled sweet and all of a sudden there's a bigger area and you can actually take on more of those the nuance flavor so yeah by all means I think adding a little water to a spirit will open it up it will probably make it more conducive to being paired with a cheese that is completely different all I'm adding is water it's completely different it's much you know them it's smoky notes anyway we're good right well we've reached the witching hour I hope the people out there have found this interesting matching brandy with cheese is something Randy and it's definitely something that you have to be careful because it's sideways brandy were just winging choose your cheese as well make sure that it's probably at home it appears that I'll learning on up people sweetness in the cheese without that you lose and I'm going to go for something too complex because the brand you will not most the complexity down and things with the Alpine students we've got here the particulars beau for that that's when that's got the strength to collect and the sweetness of that goes to already go down you want to add anything to that drove I'm just a huge bike cheese okay my name which rings of the last half-hour beautifully into a six in seemingly intelligible well I am merely a filter to your genius trim that's you've said that many times but the word genius has been replaced with something that I dared after on here again yeah but it was late and I didn't mean it right lots of love to you I'm gonna sign you off to thank you so much for joining always and next time we have some alcohol bring this piece try that done see take that day oh I cut him off up with Hussein take a right it's time for me to say good night thank you very much everyone for watching I hope you found that interesting brandy is a complex and interesting drink and matching with cheese is something that is a late-night pleasure but as we've shown tonight the right shoe is really works the wrong she's totally goes pear-shaped right next week we have Julianna from the old cheese room she's gonna bring on her baronet she's based out of Nesta farming I think it's wilt Cheryl there must be near the border with Somerset a lovely farmhouse farmed what's the word called a farm shop based on a big estate down there she's Hungarian she species lived in America she's lived in the UK she worked for Neal's dad so she's been around the houses and she's bringing her own cheese the table wouldn't be tasting through them talking about her experience it's gonna be very interesting although no brandy next week just cheese so trained with the Academy of cheese we've got lots of e-learning that you can borrow you can bond with and improve your cheese knowledge or as I always say you can train with me live on the TV and which my next course begins on the 1st of July so see you then all the best happy travels bye now see you next week  

 

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Charlie Turnbull

Academy Founding Patron, Director, Food Entrepreneur and Big Cheese

With over 20 years of industry experience in cheese retail, training and education Charlie is an acknowledged expert in cheese. As an esteemed judge at major cheese awards across the globe, Charlie also comperes the prestigious World Cheese Awards, bringing his expertise and flair to the stage! Charlie is a Founding Patron, Director and Training Partner at the Academy of Cheese.