Longjing tea and cheese? Always difficult and I don’t think there are many tea lovers in China who dare to try to pair them. When you go to a tea house in China they might serve some side dishes such as nuts or dried fruits, but you won’t get anything more adventurous. Even though, most of the Teasenz team likes to drink their tea without anything, we regularly receive questions from our customers about pairings. And when it comes to cheese, we simply don’t have an answer. We asked Formaggiokitchen what they think the best options are and we got an surprisingly detailed answer that deserved to be shared.
Good question! I always find tea and cheese pairings a bit difficult, especially with Chinese teas like Longjing since there isn’t really any cheese in Chinese food and therefore not much precedent for pairing. That said, there’s no reason a nice cup of tea and a nice slice of cheese can’t go well together. We were so taken with your question here at the shop that monger Mary and I had our own little cheese-and-tea tasting on Sunday! I took inspiration from the salty, smoked cheese I had in the Tibetan regions of Yunnan Province, looking for something on the more dry and firm side of things. Personally, I also think green teas in general pair best with cheeses that aren’t too lactic. In the end, we found three cheeses that pair great with Longjing’s sweet, smooth, nuttiness–
Ekiola Ardi Gasna Fermier — this farmstead-style sheep’s milk cheese from the Pyrénées is a little on the milder side and helps bring out Longjing’s natural nuttiness
Coolea — an Irish import made by a Dutch-Irish couple in the style of a Gouda, this cow’s milk cheese is salty and a bit sweet, the perfect complement to Longjing’s mellow, vegetal sweetness
Pantaleo — an aged goat cheese, Pantaleo is mellow enough not to overpower a cup of Longjing while still packing a bit of a citrusy tang that really brightens up the drink! Especially nice now that we’re getting ready for spring.
Let me know if you find any other great pairings!
We hope this helps you to enjoy your Longjing tea journey more. Do you know any good tea pairings? If so, feel free to share by leaving a comment.
At last the new green tea season is coming soon and find out more about when they arrive here.