Every once in a while, a cheese comes along that is so special words can’t do it justice… this is one of these cheeses.
While in New York earlier this month, The Lady was lucky enough to taste Hudson Flower two nights in a row and bring some home to The Man and Moi.
Hudson Flower begins life at Old Chatham Sheepherding Company in the Hudson Valley of New York State. Soon after making these small disks of young sheep milk cheese they are shipped to Brian Ralph, Murray’s Cheese Affineur, who uses his expertise and imagination to create “A Come to Cheeses” moment.
Some of Brian’s inspiration comes from the Corsican Fleur de Maquis, a sheep milk cheese coated with rosemary, fennel seeds and juniper berries. Brian has coated this young cheese with some of the same herbs and flowers that the sheep are eating as they graze the Hudson Valley. The secret blend which includes rosemary, lemon thyme, marjoram, elderberries and hop flowers brings terroir front-and-center.
Brian then ages the cheese for a few weeks, allowing the rind to bloom around the herbal coating and infuse the sublime paste with pine, woodsy and flowery notes.
The richness of the sheep milk combined with all those herbal notes makes for a cheese that lingers on your palate and in your head… I can still taste it… amazing how the brain (not to be confused with The Brain…) can conjure up past scents and tastes long after the event… this is one of those cheeses.
I give Hudson Flower 4 Paws out of 4 Paws (cause that’s all I’ve got)… if I had more, I’d give it that as well.
You can buy Hudson Flower and two other lovelies from Old Chatham at Murray’s by clicking here.
Photo courtesy Murray’s Cheese. Copyright Murray’s Cheese 2013.