Cooperstown Cider Washed S-Kase
The mellow apple flavor from the wash is what makes this such a special cheese. The cheese is dunked and bathed twice a week for 12 weeks with a hard cider from Awestruck Ciders in New York. It gets its name from one of the Cooperstown Cheese Company’s founders, Bob Sweitzer.
It has wonderful melting ability, similar to a raclette. It tastes good and it’s good for you. As a raw milk cheese, Cooperstown Cider Washed S-Kase has naturally occurring enzymes in the milk that don’t get destroyed with pasteurization, thus helping with digestion. Fun fact: that’s why Europeans eat cheese after dinner.
Origin: Upstate New York
Producer: Cooperstown Cheese Company
Milk: Raw cow
Rennet type: Traditional
Age: 3 months
Look: Orange-ish rind, golden paste with holes
Tastes good with: Grapes and Asian pears, on a baguette
Pairs well with: Cava, Champagne, Prosecco, apple ciders. The bubbles from sparkling wines meld well with the creaminess of the cheese.
Hook’s Triple Play
If you’re making burgers at your Super Bowl party, this is the perfect cheese for you. It’s a great melter with a creamy, mild flavor that would be perfect on a burger. It tastes a bit like Baby Swiss, Havarti, and Gouda.
The unique set of flavors is the result of a delightful blend of local cow and sheep’s milk, with a little goat’s milk added for slight tang. A true artisanal cheese, Triple Play made its debut in 2014 to rave reviews. It’s one of the latest in a 40-year line of cheeses made by college sweethearts Julie and Tony Hook. Hook’s Cheese Company now makes more than 50 kinds of cheese – all handmade. To give you an idea of the craft that goes into Hook’s cheese making, consider this: Cheese maker Julie Hook is the only woman to have ever won first overall in the World Cheese Championship.
Origin: Mineral Point, Wisconsin
Producer: Hook’s Cheese Company
Milk: Pasteurized sheep, cow, and goat
Rennet type: Vegetarian
Age: 1 year
Look: Ivory, with white crystals
Smell: Caramel, a bit like Gouda
Taste: Sweet and savory, grassy notes, nutty
Tastes good with: Makes a great grilled cheese sandwich
Pairs well with: Red wine
Vintage Five-Year Gouda
Welcome to this cheese we lovingly refer to as “cheese candy.” Aged for a full five years, this Gouda is sweet and intense. And, it’s hard like candy, too. After five years, there’s no moisture left, and it becomes dotted with white protein crystals. Those crystals are highly prized among cheese lovers and provide a delightful crunch.
Part of what makes this Gouda so special is the milk that comes from Dutch Holstein cows. In addition, the cheeses are closely monitored over the aging period, and only those that make the grade are kept for the full five years.
We like to break the cheese into chunks to eat as is, or shave it onto crackers. The well-balanced flavors of sweet and salt make this a cheese that will score big at your Super Bowl party!
Origin: Holland (Het Groene Hart area)
Milk: Pasteurized cow
Rennet type: Traditional
Rind: Natural. Wax encases the thick, inedible rind.
Age: 5 years +
Look: Rich caramel color, dotted with white crystals
Feel: Extremely hard
Taste: Butterscotch, salty
Tastes good with: European style hams, pickles, crusty bread. Make yourself a “Dutch Grilled Cheese Sandwich” with some grated Gouda, a slice of red onion, and a dash of cumin on rye bread with caraway seeds.
Pairs well with: Almost any wine or beer. We especially like it with fruity red or white wines. Even whiskey pairs well.