If the usage of the singular verb tense with a plural subject bothered you…good! I like you already. But guess what? It’s not incorrect because we’re talking about Four Roses Bourbon. And cheese. Not grammar. Clearly. Because as you’ll see, I’m fond of sentence fragments. But back to the Bourbon and cheese.
Yep. Bourbon and cheese. Way back in September, when Juno and Linus were but a twinkle in our beloved meteorologists’ eyes, I went to an event which paired Four Roses Bourbon and cheese at the French Cheese Board in Manhattan. Max McCalman, Maitre Fromagier (expert cheese guy) hosted the event and created the pairings with three Four Roses bourbons. Max was out to dispel the notion that you can only pair wine and cheese, and in my book, he succeeded.
The first cheese was Mimolette. This is a bright orange, crystalline cheese that’s almost like a parmesan and was paired with Four Roses Yellow Label. Max referred to it as “an introductory cheese with an introductory bourbon”. The saltiness of the cheese was a beautiful match for the fruit forward flavors in the bourbon. Picture a cheese plate accompanied by pears and apples – that’s what it was like.
The second pairing (which was my favorite) was Comte and Four Roses Small Batch. Comte is a semi-hard cheese with a creamy texture and nutty aroma. This cheese has a long finish and held up great to the 45% ABV of Four Roses Small Batch. Max said he paired them because he felt they brought out the vanillin in each other. I did too. For me this pairing exemplified what pairings are all about; each elevated the other creating an entirely new flavor – a really delicious one.
The last pairing was Four Roses Single Barrel and Epoisse. Epoisse is a super soft, stinky cheese that is so gooey it almost needs to be eaten with a spoon. Max called bourbon “America’s Cognac” and the plum and spiciness of Four Roses Single Barrel make a good case for that. This was a really rich, salty cheese that needed a powerhouse of a bourbon like Four Roses Single Barrel to stand up to it. Forget dessert, I’ll take this (and a glass of water).