How To Eat Brie Just Like The French Do
Centuries ago, Brie was given as tribute to French Kings. It’s easy to taste why, especially when you know how to eat Brie.
Soft and creamy, with a mild yet deeply-satisfying taste, Président Brie is a staple at any memorable gathering. Whether you are a newcomer to this wonderful cheese, or a veritable cheeseboard veteran, let us provide you with some expert tips and tricks on how to eat Brie just like the French do.
When To Serve Brie
Brie is ready to serve when it’s ripe: the outside will be firm, while the inside will be slightly bouncy and resilient. Underripe Brie can be stiff to the touch, while overripe Brie may be creamier and almost runny.
Traditionally, the French give cheese its own dedicated course at a meal, served just before dessert. However, serving cheese at a party or for an appetizer is widely accepted (and with good reason). Don’t hesitate to open your gathering, dinner party, or snack session with delectable Brie.
How To Serve Brie
When planning to serve Brie, take it out of the refrigerator about an hour before eating. This will allow the cheese to come to room temperature, and it will be irresistibly creamy.
Set the wheel or wedge on a tray with a knife and your accompaniments of choice. If serving a wheel, slice one or two small wedges ahead of time. This will give your guests an idea of an appropriate serving size. (It may also relieve anyone who feels intimidated to make the first cut!) If serving a wedge, don’t cut off the tip of the cheese, which is often the most flavorful part. Instead, cut along the side of the wedge. This will ensure everyone get to try each part of the cheese.
Savor Brie bite by bite – it’s unnecessary to scoop out half of the wedge, spread the cheese, or create a sandwich. Simply pair a small piece of cheese with a small bite of bread.
And yes, you can eat the rind! In fact, it is considered gauche by some to merely scrape the inside of the cheese and avoid the rind. Again, go ahead and set an example for guests in case they are confused.
What Food To Serve With Brie
Brie has a sumptuous yet delicate flavor. When picking things to accompany brie, it is important to enhance these qualities without overwhelming them. The French will traditionally serve Brie with baguette or another crusty bread that won’t compete with the cheese. Plain crackers are another convenient choice that won’t detract from the cheese.
Pairing Brie with something acidic will bring out its velvety texture – try fruits like apples, grapes, or pears, or sweet and zippy sides like fig jam or honey. If the occasion calls for something more substantial, try earthy nuts like unsalted pecans or candied walnuts, or laying out a charcuterie alongside cheese options.
Of course, what better to pair with Brie than more cheese? Having multiple cheeses to choose from will thrill your guests. For aesthetic purposes, we recommend having an odd number of cheeses on a cheese plate. Arranging them according to flavor, from mildest to strongest will ensure a fantastic taste experience. For instance, try starting with Président Brie for its creamy texture, building to nutty Président Don Bernardo Manchego, and finishing the journey with delectable Président Le Bleu.
Beyond these basic ideas for pairing, the options are endless. If you would like to keep exploring how to eat Brie, Président has a myriad of seasonal cheese plate ideas. Président’s guide to putting together the perfect cheese and charcuterie plate is also sure to inspire.
What To Drink With Brie
The go-to beverage to pair with Brie is champagne. But Brie also pairs fantastically with certain wines and beers. Soft and fruity red wines, such as Pinot Noir, will contrast beautifully with the mellowness of Brie. Acidic, herbaceous, dry white wines like Sauvignon Blanc will also work well.
Try pairing hearty beers, like Scotch Ale, Stout, or Porter, with Brie. Additionally, beer that is on the fruiter side, or a highly carbonated Pilsner, will enhance any Brie experience. And if alcohol isn’t on the menu, light and fresh fruit juices like apple or grape juice pair perfectly.
How To Store Brie Properly
Cutting into Brie halts the ripening process. At this point, eat the cheese within the next several days, or refrigerate it until your next snacking occasion.
The trick is to wrap the remaining cheese in waxed paper or parchment paper – avoid using plastic wrap for fresh Brie. This will allow the rind to continue to breathe and stay dry.
Beyond Cheese Plates
Once you know how to eat Brie, there are endless options for making use of its creamy, desirable flavor. If room temperature Brie is silken and soft, then warm, baked Brie is positively luxurious. Président has many recipes to get you started baking Brie, and in warmer months, try placing a wheel on the grill. Brie also works fantastically as a velvety ingredient in many delightful dishes, like a decadent stuffed pork chop, or on top of sought-after sliders. Bon appétit!