Afternoon Champagne and Cheese in Brixton
Most people consider champagne as a celebratory drink and only pop it open on special occasions. I, however, consider champange to be a wine just like any other, albeit with bubbles and it should be drunk with food accordingly.
The folks at Champagne + Fromage are also firm believers in pairing champagne with food and in particular recommend cheese as the perfect partner. I can hear some people saying, “But aren’t you supposed to pair cheese with red wine?” While that is the conventional wisdom, I find in my personal taste tests that red wine is usually not the best choice. Champagne almost always works better because it has the acidity to cut through the fattiness and creaminess of cheese. Not to mention the umamai qualities of parmesan which is fabulous with champagne.
But I’m getting ahead of myself.
Champange + Fromage have partnered champagne with various French cheeses and now offer various pairings with their champagnes. They make it easy for their customers by doing that but of course, if you want to do your own pairings, they won’t say no.
They specialise in Baked Camembert topped with various toppings. Considering that Champagne + Fromage is owned by a Franco-Italian couple, I can see where the idea of cheese with toppings would come about, it’s kind of like a cheese pizza without the crust! They offer Garlic & Herb (£7), Figs & Thyme (£8), Basil & Sun Dried Tomatoes (£7) and Truffle (£9.50). They also have a rotating list of Monthly Specials.
The day we visited, we tried their specials, Corsican Ham & Red Pepper Jam(£8.50), The Pesto & Tomato (£8.50, very popular with the Italian contingent) and Monebeliard sausage & Mustard (£10.50).
We also had the classic Escargot in an herb garlic butter (dz £8) and the Gastroboard (£21 – a selection of cheese and charcuterie). I liked all the champagne pairings. C+F only stock Growers Champagnes which means that each champagne is made by small growers, often families, who don’t produce on a large scale so you can be sure each champagne is unique in it’s own right. The champagnes range in price from £8 – £12 per glass.
If you’ve never considered champagne with food, I definitely urge you to visit Champagne + Fromage, they also have other dishes, such as Duck Confit, Tartines and do Afternoon Tea and Brunch on the Weekends. We visited the Brixton branch but they have a few other branches around town.