Happy Labor Day, readers! This week, I’m taking care of my mom’s dogs Indy and Gavin, who you can see on my Instagram feed fairly regularly. But now, I can take MORE PHOTOS of them! Squeeee! So much fluff!!
Regarding blog progress, there’s some new stuff being added later this week; I can’t wait to share it with you! I’ve been working on it for the past 3 weeks, and am just about ready to unleash it onto the Internet! Keep an eye out for it! I’ll send an email when it’s ready, so if you’d like an update, sign up for the Miss Cheesemonger mailing list!
A few weeks ago, a very kind customer, who turns out to be a blogger on career and leadership (and a great many other things), came into the cheese shop, and wrote a very kind summary of our encounter! I took a look through his vividly written blog, called Life Under Construction, and wish I had some insight like that available to me as I was going through grad school and career decision making.
Anyway, on to the cheese of the day—Grayson! It’s one that I’ve loved for a long time, and it hails from Meadow Creek Dairy, located in the rolling mountains of southwestern Virginia. The dairy, which is owned by the Feete family, is committed to raising happy Jersey cows using natural methods. Their Jersey cows are born and raised on pasture. They are rotated through pastures to allow grasses and land to renew themselves. The farm is herbicide and pesticide free.
I feel the attention to animals’ feeding and quality of life, and the farm’s terroir, shows through beautifully in Grayson, which comes in burnt orange, plump, plate-sized squares. Cutting into it reveals a butter yellow paste resembling smooth custard, punctuated by small eyes. This cheese, made from raw milk, is a washed-rind cheese, meaning it has been repeatedly rubbed with brine or other solution throughout aging to promote orange b. linens mold growth. This mold imparts a bit of a “sweaty” smell and flavor to the cheese. I found the smell on the moderate side, but it might be a bit much for some.
Tasting Grayson, if you can find it, is such a treat. I’m in love with its texture. It feels very much like custard or pudding, coating the tongue with a luxurious blanket of flavor. The rind offers great contrast, feeling a little bit grainy, with some bite. It’s like a rind biscuit. Ah, and then the taste! Magnificent. It starts off with strong buttery notes, then develops into significant, deep beef stew flavors, with a tinge of sweatiness at the very end. So much delight in one piece of cheese.
If I had to choose between a wheel of Livarot and some Grayson . . . I would have a very tough time deciding! You can find Grayson at specialty cheese shops, or online, like at Murray’s online store.