The Best & Worst of Wine & Cheese

Staff Writer
The Best & Worst of Wine & Cheese

Photo by Josh Renaud

At Amarna’s Wine & Cheese, almost twenty kinds of cheeses were presented to guests to munch on and enjoy. There were some interesting specialties alongside classics like Gouda and Cabot Cheddar, for better and for worse. I’ve spotlighted my personal best and the worst cheeses of Wine & Cheese 2014, though I encourage everyone to try these crazy cheeses out to judge for themselves.

The Contenders

Gouda, Extra Sharp Cheddar, Asiago, Goat Cheese, Muenster, Gruyere, Dubliner, Smoked Gouda, Mozzarella, Cabot Cheddar, Norwegian Jarlesberg, Windsordale Cracked Pepper, Buffalo Wing Cheese, Manchego, Brie, St. Clemens Denmark and Leyden

Amarna Wine and Cheese Event

Photo by Josh Renaud

Best
Photo courtesy of Wikipedia

Photo courtesy of Wikipedia

Asiago

Asiago is one of those cheeses that can be used on anything, anytime. Want to make a panini with pizazz? Asiago. Want to make your house salad taste less like cardboard and more like a trip through sunny Italy? Asiago. This cheese comes in a variety of textures ranging from smooth to crumbly, though Amarna featured the former.

Photo courtesy of VermontFarmstead.com

Photo courtesy of VermontFarmstead.com

Windsordale Cracked Pepper

Words cannot describe, but I’ll do my best. Black cracked pepper makes every bite of this Windsordale cheese zing, and the tart-yet-sweet dairy base provides a solid balance to the peppery spice. Windsordale is a flaky cheese, perfect for sprinkling over soups and salads any time of the year. By the end of Wine & Cheese, this specialty was naught but crumbs.

Photo courtesy of YanceysFancy.com

Photo courtesy of YanceysFancy.com

Buffalo Wing Cheese

A match made in heaven, to be sure. Though I was skeptical at first, after trying a cube I was born again into a better, more buffalo-y world. This cheese has a creamy cheddar base that’s infused with spicy buffalo wing sauce in every bite, complete with the pleasantly warm sensation typical of jalapeno and habanero peppers. I would suggest using this cheese as a dip base at your next party, accompanied by something cool and crisp like celery sticks to balance the heat of this incredible cheese.

Worst
Photo courtesy of Around The World in 80 Cheeses (Andrew Legg)

Photo courtesy of Around The World in 80 Cheeses (Andrew Legg)

St. Clemens Denmark

I still shiver when I think of the horror that is St. Clemens Denmark cheese. A blue cheese varies with age, it is typically presented when firm and slightly crumbly. Though blue cheese has its admirers, I personally cannot get over the combination of mold, salt, and cream that makes blue cheese what it is. It’s a very bitter and very pungent cheese that is usually found crumbled over equally distasteful salads. You’ve been warned.

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