Philly CheeseFreak Part 3: A Moment with the Master

In this final installment of the Philly tour, I sat down with my amazing friend Melissa (a wine and foodie genius – she was ranked Best in Philly this year!) to eat and talk about the cheeses I collected.

Best. Episode. Ever. of Cheesefreak.

It was so great to have someone on who really actually knows about food!

The episode went on so long I had to break it into two parts – so the ranking is here…stupid 10 minute rule on youtube.

FOODIE TIP: She recommended we eat the cheeses from ‘youngest to oldest’ which means from softest to hardest…very useful hint.

BREAD TIP: And we at the cheese on bread – Dan from DiBruno Bros.  was adamant that we eat it on bread not crackers.   Given that I can’t get fresh bread that easily, I’ll be stickin’ to crackers.

Here’s what we ate:

  1. Toma Della Rocca – from the Piedmont area of Italy.  Toma is a word for a special kind of cow’s milk cheese from Italy.  The ‘Della _____’ part means ‘from wherever.’ Rocca means rock so I’m not quite sure where this puppy is from.  It was damn good though – Piedmont is kinda up in the Alps.  It was like eating cream – so light and tangy and airy…mmmmm

Both this cheese and the ‘Drunken Sheep’ Cheese below can both be called ‘drunken’ cheese because as a part of the process , the cheese is washed in a wine, which can be tasted on the cheese mmmmmmm drunken cheese…..drunk sheep 2. Brebis Russe  – from again near the Alps.  Brebis means a sheep cheese in France and Russe basically means red – it gets the red from the yeast in the air as it ages.  This is Melissa’s all time favorite cheese right now- it’s  so excellent – if you can find it – go get it now!!!  It was hard to find information about this cheese, sorry!  Here’s a gratuitous picture of the French alps:french alps 3. Serpa cheese named – Azeitao – there’s a nice summary of it on this website.  They say it was named for Azeitão is named for the village where it was born in the foothills of the Arribida mountain range in Portugal. portugal(ok weird – all of these cheeses are from the mountains!)   Serpa cheeses all have a sour, vegetal intensity – you can say that again – this cheese is not for me.cheese on cat 4. Drunken Sheep Pecorino Toscano– A ‘pecorino’ is basically a sheep cheese from Italy. And this one was made somewhere in Tuscany.  The wine grape in Tuscany (so great to have an expert around) is the Chianti, so it must have been some kind of San Giovese.  This is sooooooooo good.  Find it if you can.  I’ve been to Tuscany..it really is that stupid beautiful and  the food is amazing.  *sigh*tuscay 5. Mt Valley Cheddar – This is a local Amish made cheddar from Lancaster Country in Pennsylvania.  It was a good cheese.  The cool thing is it had aged so much that it had little salt crystals in it.  I can’t hear Amish without thinking of Weird Al….weirdAlAmish

THANK YOU SOOOOO MUCH to my foodie expert friend Melissa!


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