Third segment in my wine and cheese pairings with NYC cheese consultant Raymond Hook. This week, we turned to Italy. Italians make wine to be served as a side item to dinner, so their cheese naturally matches their wines.
Piave is a firm-textured cow’s milk cheese from the Piave River Valley region of Belluno in northern Italy. Full-bodied and flavorful, it’s loaded with grassiness and floral charecteristics. Its slight oiliness (think Parmesan Reggiano) adds to the flavor and also helps make the bridge to the dusty, cherry-laden Sangiovese blend. Make sure you let the cheese reach room temperature to fully enjoy it.
Pair Piave with the Antinori 2005 Rosso Toscana or, if you prefer something American, a full-bodied red zinfandel like Ravenswood Zen of Zin.