Monthly Clubs Cheese of the Month Club Review
A “turophile” is a connoisseur of cheese. Something we “turophiles” often struggle with is knowing which new cheeses to try. When you’re at the specialty market or the fromagerie, surveying all the different cheeses, it can be a little overwhelming. It’s hard to know what to try, and it’s even harder to know how to serve a new cheese or what to pair it with. The Cheese of the Month Club from Monthlyclubs.com makes it easy for cheese lovers to try new cheeses and re-discover old favorites. Most importantly, this club provides extensive information so you know what to serve and drink with every cheese that they send.
A copy of “In Pursuit of Cheese” was included with my shipment. This is an invaluable source of information on the history of the cheeses, where they are from, and most importantly, suggestions on how to eat them and what other foods and drinks to pair them with. My monthly selection of cheeses included Sage Derby, Bourdin Chevre and Double Gloucester. Two of the cheeses were wrapped in paper, so I knew that they had been cut from a large wheel. This is always a good indicator of the quality of the cheese.
I was most excited to try the Sage Derby. I’ve seen sage derby in cheese shops but have been slightly intimated by its green, marbled hue. This unusual cheese gets its color from actual sage leaves that are blended into the curd during the production process. The guide recommended that I pair it with a chenin blanc or sauvignon blanc, and I was happy to oblige. The dry wine that I selected perfectly complimented the creamy, robust flavor of the cheese served on water crackers. This cheese has a similar flavor to a sharp cheddar with subtle herbal sage notes. It was different, and delicious!
Next up was the Double Gloucester. Double Gloucester gets its name because it uses cream from the night’s milking and the following day’s milk. Its production dates back to the 8th century! This was my favorite cheese of the bunch. Creamy, nutty and buttery in flavor, the texture was similar to cheddar—firm but still somewhat flaky. The leaflet suggested pairing it with either dry or sweet wine or an English pub ale, further reflecting the versatility of this cheese. I served it with the sage derby and the chenin blanc. Because it melts so well, I used it the next day in an omelet.
Last but not least was the Bourdin Chevre. I consider goat cheese to be a staple in the kitchen and I cook with it often. I immediately knew that extremely versatile goat cheese would be perfect in one of my favorite recipes: chicken with goat cheese sauce. For those who are new to goat cheeses, the leaflet had some great suggestions on how to eat this simple, unadorned goat cheese. It is described as “a perfect base on which to add your own touch of flavors. Garnish it with fresh herbs or spices: crushed black peppercorns, lemon zest, or rosemary and thyme.” It also suggests pairing it with figs, dates, honey and jam. Yummy! This suggestion reminded me it had been awhile since I had made bacon-wrapped dates stuffed with goat cheese, and after my cheese sauce, I had enough goat cheese left to make this appetizer.
The Cheese of the Month Club from Monthlyclubs.com is the ideal gift for any who appreciates fine cheeses and gourmet foods.