In the U.S., it’s impossible to prepare a raw milk cheese board and include soft and bloomy rind cheeses. That’s because the FDA and the Federal Government know what’s best for the citizenry and decided somewhere back in “the day” that they must save the humankinds from themselves… according to The Lady, that’s a crock (if the FDA or government types are monitoring this… the previous statements are those of The Lady and not those of this Feline Foodie. I realize that the government can revoke my visa at any moment and send me back to The Brain and The Mothership… oh that’s right, I’m here illegally… a true “illegal alien” if you will… which pretty much means I’m safe from ever being deported… but I digress…)
Back to raw cheeses, which top the list of favorites around the manse. The Lady and I designed this cheese board to please even finicky Uncle Hal, if you don’t have an Uncle Hal, I’m willing to head for Vegas and lay down a bet that you have at least one finicky eater who will be hanging around the buffet table on Christmas Day.
LaClare Farms – Evalon – This raw goat milk cheese from Wisconsin is aged seventy days and is a young gouda-style cheese; semi-soft and tangy. In March 2011, this cheese took top honors at the U.S. Cheese Championship with the highest score of 99.06. This cheese was also a winner at the 2011 American Cheese Society Conference and if there’s one thing I know, it’s that those folks are picky when it comes to cheese…
Willamette Valley Cheese Company – Boerenkaas – Another gouda-style cheese made from 100% raw Jersey Cow Milk. The Lady picks this up at the Portland Farmer’s Market, but you can order it from WVCC and at select cheese shops in the Pacific Northwest. This cheese is creamy, buttery with just a hint of citrus.
Beehive Cheese Company – Full Moon – The first batch of this cheese was made under the full moon… earthy with a reflection of the four Utah seasons that bless the Beehive State.
Lincolnshire Poacher from Neal’s Yard – A favorite around the manse, you can buy this in Portland at Steve Jones’s Cheese Bar up on Mt. Tabor. This cheese is rich, sweet and nutty with a dense paste. If you’ve never had the Poacher, you’re in for a treat.
Rogue Creamery – Rogue River Blue – If you can still find this seasonal cheese, it’s the perfect ending for this cheese board. Made in Central Point, Oregon by two of our favorite cheese makers, Cary Bryant and David Gremmels, RRB is made using the Oregon Blue recipe and wrapping the wheels in Syrah Grape Leaves that have been macerated in local pear wine. Then they age it for a year and release it the following year in late September. Only two cheeses have ever won Best of Show at the American Cheese Society Conference and this is one of them.
More Cheese Board selections are available on the website by clicking here.