Along with Gruyère and Emmental, Appenzeller cheese is part of the trifecta of cheeses that go into what’s generally accepted to be the most traditional Swiss fondue recipe. All three of these Swiss cheeses are perfect for melting and fantastic on their own (Gruyère is one of the world’s most popular cheeses, and Emmental is the official name for what we call "Swiss cheese"), but Appenzeller sometimes takes a back seat to its more famous friends. Today we’ll settle that score, as Appenzeller is our Cheese of the Week.
Appenzeller is a semi-firm washed-rind cow’s milk cheese, made in the north of Switzerland. This mountain cheese got its start in monasteries, aged in cool mountain caves. While about 75 dairies currently produce Appenzeller, only three use raw milk, and it’s the raw-milk Appenzeller that you should be on the lookout for.