Grayson Cheese – stinky cheese from Virginia

happy cows 2

Why do sprinklers make “Happy Cows”! And why is a happy cow that important, you ask. Well a happy cow, allowed to graze in green pastures, eating grass and clover and other plants makes a better tasting milk, than a cow that never sees the outside and is given a diet of dried grass and grains.  A better tasting milk with more protein makes a better tasting cheese. The sprinklers increase the amount of clover giving Grayson cheese its special flavors.

Grayson is made at Meadow Creek Dairy in Virginia and was originally inspired by the cheeses of Wales and Ireland. It took years of trial and error and several trips to Europe before they were happy with the results. The surface is ripened at least 60 days to achieve the reddish orange rind and golden paste. The texture is supple and fudgy and becomes like silk as it warms. The taste is slightly sweet, with grassy or nutty notes and a solid earthy undertone.

It looks like Taleggio. Smells like Feete (family name of Cheesemaker). This award-winning cheese is a product of the strict ecological farming practices of the Feete family farm in the mountains of southwestern Virginia. Using the raw milk of their 80-head herd of Jersey cows, this hand-crafted cheese is available 9 months a year. It’s deliciously sticky and stinky but time in our caves takes it to the next level. Deep, golden paste spills across the plate in a river of oniony, beefy, full-throttle intensity. Not for the feint of the heart, and one of the best we’ve ever tasted.  Made to emulate Taleggio with a washed rind, pungent aroma and big flavor this one is already a favorite.

Grayson is a very flavorful cheese which stands well on its own, but also goes well with bread or dried fruit.  It pairs well with a full bodied white wine and is assertive enough for a medium red.  But a favorite saying around the Feete household is “Tame the Feete(s) with a malty brown ale”

Store cheese in the refrigerator wrapped in a paper that will allow it to breathe.  Avoid prolonged storage in plastic wrap or other non-breathing material. Always let your cheese come to room temperature before serving to allow its full flavor to develop.

Cheese Type: Stinky

Milk Type: Cow Raw (unpasteurized)

Rennet: Animal

Age: 2 – 3 months

Origin: USA

Region: Virginia

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Filed under Artisan Cheese, Cheese, Chef Lippe, Grayson

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