Carr Valley Mixed Milk Cheese Plate
The Lady, The Man and your favorite Feline Foodie (that would be me…of course) have become devoted fans of the cheese of Wisconsin’s Carr Valley Cheese Company. Sid Cook and his team of Cheesemakers have developed more than 80 different cheeses; many of them are truly American Originals. I decided to taste and review a few more:
I began with the award-winning Cave-Aged Marisa. Aged for six months in an open-air cave this complex cheese has a sweet earthiness with a high butterfat content that balances well with its natural saltiness. The creamy Cave-Aged Marisa took home a First Place Ribbon in its class at the 2005 American Cheese Society. The Dalmatian Fig Spread added just the right amount of sweetness.
Next up was Casa Bolo Mellage, a semi-firm cheese made from the milk of cows, sheep and goat. This Award-Winning Cheese (First Place in its class at the 2004 ACS Competition) is crafted in a three-pound ball and aged for two years. Another complex cheese without the gaminess that often accompanies goat cheeses in particular. The Lady served this wonderful cheese with cherry preserves and the pairing was quite pleasing.
The third cheese we tasted was Creama Kasa, a triple cream cow milk cheese that melted on the palate. You can NEVER go wrong with a triple cream cheese and buttery Creama Kasa is no exception. Spread it on a warm baguette…yummers…
The next cheese we tasted was Mobay, no doubt Sid Cook’s homage to the French classic, Morbier, with a twist. The bottom layer of cheese is from sheep milk and the top layer is goat cheese. They are separated by a layer of grape vine ash and pressed together. The flavors are rustic and delicate at the same time. This is quite an interesting cheese; one sure to wow your guests.
Next up was Ménage, another mixed milk cheese that is wrapped in a vibrant green wax and aged for nine months. The flavor is intense and the texture is slightly on the dry side, in a good way, of course.
The Black Goat Truffle cheese had a nice earthiness that even The Lady found delightful. This cheese is washed in truffle oil and aged for six months. The black truffle pieces throughout this cheese add to its earthy delight.
We turned our taste buds to two flavored cow milk cheddars: Apple Smoked and a Garlic Cheddar. The Apple Smoked is white cheddar that has been hand-rubbed with paprika with a light smoky flavor that balances well with the paprika. This cheese has won numerous awards including a First Class at the 2005 American Cheese Society Conference. The Garlic Cheddar is mild cheddar with a pungency that comes from the garlic.
Last up was Ba Ba Blue, an intense Sheep’s Milk Blue that is aged for four months. This award-winning cheese was a perfect ending to yet another perfect Carr Valley Cheese Plate.
The Lady and I wish to thank Beth, Sales Manager at Carr Valley for her assistance in putting this cheese plate together.
I give this mixed milk cheese plate 3 Paws out of 4 Paws (cause that’s all I’ve got).
Serving Suggestions: The possibilities are endless and go far beyond a cheese plate, although on a cheese plate, you can never go wrong. Add a few crackers, a warm baguette and some grapes and Marcona Almonds and you’ve got a winner.
Wine Pairings: With the mixture of milks, the proper pairings are numerous. As The Lady likes to say, drink what you like.
Beer Pairing: I asked Mike Wright, Beer Enthusiast for a pairing suggestion and his reply was, “Why, Bud Light, of course.”
Source: Cow, Sheep and/or Goat
Awards: Sid Cook and his crew are the most award-winning cheesemakers in the world with over 200 medals and ribbons total.
FTC Full Disclosure – The cheesemaker/manufacturer sent me their product, hoping I would review the product/cheese.