Antwerp wasn’t on my bucket list until I tasted this gorgeous Belgian Gouda. Now I must go. The cheese is made at a creamery about an hour away, then sent to Antwerp for aging. The family that matures the Gouda (and many other fine European cheeses) also runs a cheese shop in Antwerp that some say is the best in Europe. The shop stocks hundreds of cheeses and supplies Belgium’s finest restaurants. The famous De Koninck brewery is practically next door and provides the cheese-aging space. Field trip, anyone?Read More
These days a new cheese has to have a reason for being or it will never find a place at the retail counter. How is it different? What needs does it serve? Why should merchants make room for it?
Cowgirl Creamery—the California company behind Mt. Tam, Red Hawk and other successes—rarely releases a new cheese, so any debut from them is news…..Read More
I was thinking that some of those wavy Southern cheese straws would be a nice addition to my Thanksgiving relish tray, but I can’t find my cookie press. (Maybe I never had one?) However, I did find my autumn-leaf cookie cutters so that’s what I’m using instead. My favorite recipe for the cheese straws comes from an honest-to-goodness Southern belle and good friend who grew up eating them. I think you’ll enjoy making them for Thanksgiving or any holiday parties to come.Read More
A wedge of English Cheddar I purchased recently had a few threads of blue mold inside, the result of a breach in the rind. The blue didn’t deter me—the cheese tasted great—but I knew many shoppers would eye the piece and put it back. I asked the clerk how she talks to customers who flinch at the sight of blue veins in a Cheddar. “I tell them it’s been kissed by mold,” she said. I like that.Read More
October is American Cheese Month, and to celebrate, I have invited some American cheese luminaries to take over Planet Cheese. Last up: Sue Conley (above left), co-founder, with Peggy Smith (above right), of California’s Cowgirl Creamery. This acclaimed company makes Mt. Tam, Red Hawk, Wagon Wheel, clabbered cottage cheese and several seasonal cheeses. I asked Sue to share a cheese-world issue that’s top of mind for her.Read More
Halloween is pretty quiet at my house. We have almost no kids in our neighborhood. Still, I fill a bowl with candy and wait for the doorbell to ring. This year, I plan to settle in for the evening with my favorite candy—a well-aged, crystalline, caramelly Gouda—and a Rogue Dead Guy Ale. The creepy label will get me in the mood for whatever little ghouls do come to the door.Read More
My brother Andy and I started making cheese in Greensboro, Vermont, in the spring of 2003. We wanted to satisfy three fundamental needs: meaningful work, in a place that we love, with people we love.
We set about developing a business built around a collection of cheeses that would serve as the economic mechanism we would leverage to protect the working landscape in Vermont’s Northeast Kingdom.Read More
It may be American Cheese Month, but for me, everymonth is American Cheese Month. Heck, every dayis. It’s been that way for twenty years, having been an American cheese enthusiast and cheerleader all my cheese life. And so it is that when the Planet Cheesemaven herself invited me to write a guest post on my passion subject, I answered with an enthusiastic, “Yes!” Not only was I thrilled to be asked to do this, but I was especially happy to be shining the light on five American cheeses and cheesemakers by way of Planet Cheese.Read More
It was a sad day for American cheese lovers when Ig Vella passed away in 2011. Losing this crusty, cantankerous, opinionated cheesemaker was bad enough. But what would become of Vella Dry Jack, his California company’s flagship creation? Would it change for the worse without his oversight? “I can tell you a lot of people were worried about it,” his daughter Chickie told me recently.Read More
Mozzarella consumption plummets once tomato season ends, but not at my house. I love mozzarella with roasted sweet peppers and, in winter, with cooked greens. This summer, a buffalo-milk mozzarella from Colombia caught my eye. It took a blue ribbon at the American Cheese Society judging, and I realized I’d been seeing the brand around but hadn’t tried it. The Colombian co-founder of Būf Creamery told me the company’s origin story—there’s a Cornell connection—and confirmed its head-spinning growth.Read More