While I do like to spring for a nice (read: $20 max) bottle of wine for a special occasion, I unfortunately can’t quite justify buying a couple of bottles every week for my day-to-day drinking. Sadly, most of the wine I consume still comes out of a cardboard box, with the notable exceptions of Barefoot Riesling, Yellowtail Pinot Noir, and whatever I can find in my liquor store’s clearance bin. Hey, at least I’ve upgraded from Franzia to Black Box, so it’s not like I’m a complete degenerate, okay? My wallet may like my decision to continue drinking like a college kid, but my taste buds are less than thrilled. I suffer through the initial sting and burn of cheap wine, and try to drink my first few glasses quickly enough that by the time I’m tipsy, I don’t notice just how crappy my alcohol actually is.
What if there was a way to take the cheap, shitty wine I drink, and turn it into something that you can actually enjoy? As it turns out, there is – all you have to do is pair your wine with cheese. That’s right – by adding what’s undeniably our favorite food group to our cheap drinking, our taste buds will think we’re popping expensive bottles all because paired our vino with pizza, queso, or mozzarella sticks. If this isn’t a dream come true, I really don’t know what is.
Scientists at the Centre for Taste and Feeding Behavior conducted a study of self-proclaimed wine buffs to determine what outside factors affect the way wine tastes. Luckily for us, these researchers found that both red and white wines tasted better if you ate cheese alongside it, as if you needed to convince me to eat more cheese anyway. The study participants took a few sips of wine before consuming cheese and a few sips after, and found that, in the cases of every type of cheese sampled, the wine actually tasted better than it did before.
The next time you’re about to pop open a $3 bottle of wine from Trader Joe’s, go ahead and pick up some cheesy garlic bread to go along with it. Not only will you get some nutrition (or at least as much nutrition as you can get from cheesy bread, anyway), but your cheap wine will taste like a million bucks – or at least like a bottle of wine that costs more than $3. Cheers. .
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