Montagnard is the French word for ‘mountain.’ Want to take a stab at where this cheese comes from? Yes, the French mountains, very good. And what are they doing up in those French mountains? They are making a cheese that is creamy and pudgy, with an aroma that is funkier than its flavor. Indeed, this cow’s milk cheese is delightfully mild on the palate, and it pairs wonderfully with a Pinot Gris or Chardonnay.
Just the Facts
ChardonnayThis wine is all over the map – literally! Flavor varies widely depending on where and how it’s made.
Old World Chardonnay: crisp and minerally, with flavors of apples and roasted pears.
Pair with: Fresh or bloomy rind cheese, like Delice de Bourgogne
New World Chardonnay (USA, warmer climates): richly buttery and oaky, heavy notes of vanilla, brown butter, and tropical fruits.
Pair with: Slightly stronger cheese like sweet Tickler cheddar, or a mild washed rind.
Oxidized Chardonnay: When Chardonnay is intentionally exposed to air it is “oxidized.” Common in the Jura mountain region, this wine is almost sherry-like with spicy, nutty flavors.
Chenin BlancCrisp and acidic with light minerality. You may smell stone fruit, apples, pear, quince, even some fresh herbs.
Pair with: Tangy Loire Valley goat cheese to bring out crisp, mineral qualities in both. Something like Selles-sur-Cher will work perfectly!
Sauvignon BlancTypically bright and lemony, with clean citrus flavors. Can also have grassy and vegetal aromas (think green bell pepper).