It has been a few weeks since the last “Cheese 101” installment, but, trust me I haven’t forgotten about cheese. I’ve been busy working on the shop while also tasting some delicious cheese. This time I believe I have stumbled on some unique and delicious cheeses. Read on for all the details.

Heinen's Just Enough

All cheeses purchased courtesy Heinen’s “Just Enough” section.

Cheese 101: Huntsman

Huntsman

Background

Huntsman Cheese is a Double Gloucester cheese with a layer of Stilton in the middle.

It is sometimes made in 5 layers — 3 of Double Gloucester and 2 of Stilton, and sometimes in 3 layers — 2 of Double Gloucester and 1 of Stilton.

Both cheeses are made of pasteurized cow’s milk. The layering is done by hand.

Huntsman, a trademarked name, has been around since at least 1982. It is made by Long Clawson Dairy (founded 1911) in Melton Mowbray, Leicestershire, England. (Courtesy of Cook’s Info)

[Huntsman] is made by starting with a wheel of 36 month aged Double Gloucester and cutting out sections in the split wheel by hand. The cut out sections are then filled in by hand with 3 month aged Stilton blue cheese. This time consuming process yields a wonderful cheese that is quite unique. It presents a combination of the soft, assertive Stilton with the mild flavored, hard textured Double Gloucester. (Courtesy Around The World Cheese)

Aroma/Flavor

This mixture of Double Gloucester and Stilton is definitely a unique mash-up of cheese. Both the aroma and flavor were dominated by typical, but yummy, blue cheese. The Double Gloucester provided the smooth, creamy texture. Together, the two cheeses created a unique flavor profile.

Cheese 101: Huntsman

Final Thoughts

I had heard favorable comments, about Huntsman and, therefore, had high hopes. Unfortunately, I was let down. I felt like the Stilton blue cheese was overwhelming and the Double Gloucester was too mild. In my opinion, it was best to eat the two cheeses separately which defeats the purpose of Huntsman. The overall, combined flavor did slightly improve the more I sampled the cheese but it still did not live up to my expectations.

Additional Resources

Cheese 101: Malvarosa

Malvarosa

  • Milk: Pasteurized Sheep
  • Country of OriginSpain
  • Region: Valencia
  • Type: Semi-Firm
  • Texture: FirmSmooth
  • Aged: Minimum 3 Months
  • Beverage Pairing: Chianti, Pinot Grigio, Rioja, Chateauneuf-du-Pape, Cotes du Rhone, Cider, Wheat Beers
  • Grade (Out of 5)Cheese Grade: 5/5

Background

For those of us who fret over sustainability issues and the biodiversity of the planet’s plant and animal kingdoms, contemplate Malvarosa’s short, illustrious history. Made from the milk of the Guirra sheep, the cheese’s sole reason for existence is to help save the rare breed. A member of the Slow Food Ark of Taste, the “living catalog of delicious and distinctive foods facing extinction”, the Guirra sheep–otherwise known as Red Levantine sheep–is of African ancestry and raised for milk, meat, and wool. (Courtesy of CheeseRank)

Cheeses destined for the Spanish market are formed in the traditional Manchego molds. However, cheeses due to be sold in the United States are treated differently: after being placed in cheesecloth, the curds are pressed and drained by bringing the corners of the cloth together and tying them tightly to squeeze out excess whey. Once released from the cloth, the curds take on the imprint and creases of the cloth, as well as the distinctive, pointed “servilleta” shape where the knot of the cloth was tied. (Courtesy of culture)

The final product bears the imprints of the cloth, giving it a characteristic twist at the top, called a servilleta. (Courtesy of CheeseRank)

…careful cheesemaking and gentle pasteurization preserve an enormous hit of succulent flavor. (Courtesy Murray’s Cheese)

Aroma/Flavor

Although it seems counterintuitive, as I have stated previously, cheese can, in my opinion, have a smooth and creamy aroma. That is the case with Malvarosa. Before you even bite into it, you can decipher the texture. Upon tasting, the rich buttery, nutty flavors are clearly evident with hints of butterscotch and the sweetness of the sheep’s milk lingering behind.

Or, you could describe the flavor as follows…

With a milky sweetness that warms you from the inside, Malvarosa is compulsively snackable. Its rich texture evokes the red wax-wrapped babybels of grade school lunch boxes and is just as pleasantly chewy. This sheep’s milk cheese has a palpable innocence to it: easy-going and delightful, its adaptability makes it truly a crowd pleaser. (Courtesy of Cheese Rank)

Cheese 101: Malvarosa

Final Thoughts

Malvarosa was absolutely delicious and one I would most definitely recommend snacking on. This cheese is similar to Manchego, but I must agree with Murray’s Cheese when they say Malvarosa “blows Manchego away.” A few days after my original sample, I tried it again and enjoyed it just as much as the first time.

Cheese 101: Deer Creek Stig/Fawn

The Fawn & The Stag

Background

This traditional 22-lb. daisy {both The Fawn & The Stag} is completely handcrafted by Wisconsin Master Cheese Maker Kerry

Henning in Kiel, Wis. It is made from cow’s milk in an area of [Wisconsin] where the glacial lobes of the last Ice Age converged and then receded, creating the distinctive terrain. It’s made with the addition of the unique culture set from award-winning Deer Creek Vat 17…(Courtesy Sendiks Market)

Select vats of The Fawn are chosen for further aging to allow for the development of the intense, bold flavor characteristics of The Stag…As it ages, The Stag develops a hint of crystalline crunch to further enliven the taste buds with rich texture as well as flavor. (Courtesy The Artisan Cheese Exchange)

The Stag is produced in 22-pound bandaged daisy wheels. Aged for at least 17 months, it’s an older version of Deer Creek’s The Fawn. (Courtesy culture)

Aroma/Flavor

The Fawn’s aroma is highlighted by notes of sweet butterscotch that entices you to take a bite. This aroma is evident as you taste The Fawn and allow the individual flavors to develop in your mouth. The Stag, since it is aged, has bolder aromas and flavors than the Fawn. The butterscotch and toffee flavors are evident immediately, while there still remains the sweet finish that is found in The Fawn.

Cheese 101: Deer Creek Stig/Fawn

Final Thoughts

I love Cheddar cheese so it is no surprise that I fell in love with The Fawn and The Stag, Cheddar-like cheeses. The Stag, with the more pronounced flavors, would be my choice between the two but they are both delectable.

Additional Resources