Cheese of the Week: Sweet Grass Dairy’s Green Hill
Cheese of The Week is a weekly feature on The Daily Meal, drawing on the expertise of internationally renowned cheese expert and consultant Raymond Hook. What follows is based on an interview with Hook.
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Green Hill, produced by Thomasville’s Ga.’s Sweet Grass Dairy, is a handcrafted wonder, and has graced the menus at some of the country’s top restaurants, including Per Se. It’s a double cream, soft-ripened cow’s milk cheese with a bloomy rind that’s similar to Camembert, and each batch takes five hours to make. The curd is ladled into molds and ripened for two weeks before being shipped, and the result is a golden, creamy 8-ounce cheese with a rich buttery flavor that has a very loyal following.
"That golden color is the actual color of the milk," said Hook. "The cows are grass-fed, the milk has no additives at all — in fact the farmers are the cheesemaker’s parents — and they’re Jersey cows, which are smaller and produce less milk, but it’s of an incredibly high quality."
Hook doesn’t usually recommend specific brands of wine to pair with a particular cheese, but in this case J.J. Prum Wehlener Sonnenuhr Kabinett’s 2011 Riesling from Mosel-Saar-Ruwer, Germany, is a match made in heaven. "There are only a few times when I’ve had truly ethereal wine and cheese combinations," he said. "It’s truly spectacular." Sweet Grass Dairy also suggests pairing it with sparkling wine or a Belgian Trippel ale.