January 30, 2014

This Cheese Doesn't Suck: Cornish Yarg



    Yep.  Cornish Yarg.  That's it's actual name.  I prefer to draw out the "arrrrr!" when talking to my customers about it.  Makes me feel a wee bit like a pirate.  Plus, you know, "yarg" is just a fun word to say.  Even if it's only "gray" spelled backwards.  Clever since this cheese has it's characteristic dusty gray/green rind.  
    A cows milk cheese developed in Cornwall, England in the 1970's it's a nice riff on a semi firm cheese.  The outside is wrapped and then subsequently aged in nettle leaves that grow wild in the Cornish countryside.  The nettles definitely contribute to the wholly unique (I don't think I've ever had a cheese taste quite like "The Yarg") flavor profiles of the cheese.  Its aroma being moderately strong, singing with moldering leaves (natch), and floral/fruit tones.  The texture is springy with a bit of a wet, sponge-y feel that is not unpleasant. 


    However the flavor, oh the flavor, is like a bushel of overripe peaches and nectarines without the sweet burst onto the palate.  With well balanced salt and a bit of nettle like bite to the finish this is certainly a new favorite to my ever growing list of knock-out cheeses.  

December 09, 2013

Grilled Cheese with Meule de Savoie, Roast Potato, + Bacon


    I'll just get this off my chest.  It's.  Cold.  As in really, really cold by Denver standards.  As I write this the outdoors gets to enjoy one single balmy degree on the Fahrenheit scale (that's -18C to the rest of the rational world).  
    My only solution to ever feeling warm on the inside ever again is to make something with hot melted cheese.  But really, isn't that everyone's solution?  What I present to you is a glorious sandwich of the refined French alpine-style cheese, Meule de Savoie, and stuff I scrounged in my fridge.  
    What happened was a layering of cheese onto sour dough with leftover thin sliced roast potatoes (from yesterdays dinner), and the last two pieces of apple wood smoked bacon.
  The crispy gooey result was the subtle mineral-y, earth, and astringent cream flavors of the cheese blending nicely with the salty smoke of bacon and potato.  
    So put some of this in your face and feel warmer.  I hear this winter thing keeps on being cold... 

December 06, 2013

This Cheese Doesn't Suck: Valdeon Blue (and a giveaway winner, too!)

        Guys, that was a  lot of unintentional rhyming in the title of this post.  Yeah, sorry about that.  I guess it's the result of listening to too much Christmas music.  I admit, I'm not actually a curmudgeon about the holiday season.  When confronted with bespectacled hipsters lauding how much gift giving, St. Nick, and tinsel are overrated.  Well, lets say I just throw their own eye-roll ammunition right back at them.  
    But lets face it, my favorite part of this aggressively festive season is the eating.  No kidding, right?  This is the time of year that I dust off my hollow leg and get down to some serious noshing.  (secret: I don't actually eat huge amounts of grub the rest of the year.) 

    So Santa baby, if you're listening, leave a nice slice of this Valdeon blue under my Christmas tree.  You know, for me?  Because this blue is one slick holiday party attendee.  No matter your drink and nibbles situation Valdeon fits right in.  
    Does it pair with juicy, sparkling white wine?  Check.  Is that a platter of smoked meats on that appetizer table?  Check.  What goes with your swank after dinner sherry?  You have one guess.  
    Yes, Valdeon embodies a lot of my requirements for a good crowd pleasing blue.  Not too rustic, balanced salt content, the paste is supple with a hint of crumble, the chestnut leaves wrapping it give it a campfire-y earthiness, and a hint of white pepper piquant lingering on the finish.  
    Santa, I'll be waiting up for you.


    {We have a winner! After much digging around, blindfolded, in a hat full of names, The Board and Wire Anniversary Giveaway winner is Jesse Purdom!  Congrats to the winner and keep an eye out for a special cheese-centric Christmas box coming your way!}