Happy Monday, everyone! I still feel like I’m recovering from last week’s San Francisco Fancy Food Show, where I walked food-filled aisles for hours on end. Luckily, I got to chill out at the annual California Artisan Cheese Guild meeting yesterday at Marshall Home Ranch. There, it was announced that I’ve taken on the role of Guild photographer! I can’t wait to get started.
Ahem, as for the Fancy Food Show, there were so many delicious cheeses. Some of them were new, some were old, some were old, but new to me. Here are a few of my favorites:
Almnäs Tegel: This Alpine style cheese comes in (roughly) 50 lb. bricks imprinted with the cheese’s name and footprints (the logo of this former brick making company). This particular wheel had some toasted almond flavor, sweet hay, and a tiny bit of earthy funk.
Anno 1225: This cheese was inspired by cheese made during the Middle Ages, hence its name. It is hand pressed into historically inspired baskets. The flavor I found was full and earthy, with toasted hazelnuts. The paste was slightly open, with small eyes throughout.
Both of cheese cheeses were made by Almnäs Bruck. For more info, visit their website!
Cardus: This cheese from Da Morgada is unusual, being a raw goat’s milk cheese made with thistle rennet. It packs a LOT of earthy, funky flavor, and has a thick, brownie batter texture.
Madaio Canestrato: from Casa Madaio, is made from sheep’s milk. I loved the notes of hay and toasted almonds.
Grottone: shaped like a pineapple, also from Casa Madaio. It’s got a mild, milky flavor and lots of eyes throughout its alabaster paste.
Featured image at top of article: Guffanti Gorgonzola Dolce Cremificato. Just look at that photo! Just add a spoon, and you’re all set.
Cheesemaker Ueli Moser presented his cheeses, all made in Switzerland, all soft.
Screamer: Moser’s Screamer is a tiny button of triple crème deliciousness. I loved its smooth, velvety texture. It wasn’t like the stiff peaks of paste in Brillat Savarin or Délice de Bourgogne, or even Mt. Tam. It was smooth and unctuous through and through.
Moser Trüffel: I don’t always like truffle cheeses, but this one was wonderful. Moser makes a sort of “truffle sandwich” by adding a center layer of mascarpone and truffle into rounds of triple crème cheese.
Cella: By the Mozzarella Cheese Company in Dallas, TX. This fresh cow/goat’s cheese is wrapped with lemongrass. It was a welcome, refreshing cheese to taste in the midst of the American Cheese Pavilion, reminiscent of summer days by the lake (at least, it would be, if I had ever spent summer days by a lake).
Salted butter: from PastureLand in Wisconsin. This butter is only made when cows are feeding in pasture, so there is a lot of grassy, sweet flavor here. I wish I could take a bar home with me!
Martone: from LaClare Farms in Wisconsin. This is a surface-riipened goat/cow blend, dusted with vegetable ash. The wheel I tasted was pretty young, but creamy and slightly tangy.
Crocodile Tear: From Capriole Goat Cheese in Indiana. This surface-ripened droplet is dusted with paprika, and presents a different aspect of the goat cheeses Capriole makes so well.
Next time, I’ll share with you some of my non-cheese finds!