Wednesday, September 5, 2007

Roth Kase Sole Gran Queso

Iberia: a big, warm peninsula (if you count Portugal and Spain as one) dividing the Mediterranean and the Atlantic.

Wisconsin: a big, cold peninsula (if you count Michigan) dividing Lake Superior and Lake Michigan.

What do these two land masses have in common? Well, very little. But they are both home to some great cheese. So Roth Kase, the award-winning cheesemaker from Monroe, Wis., is determined to draw a dairy link between the two with the Gran Queso.

"Muy bueno" I say to Roth. And also, "Muchas gracias."

Like a good Manchego, the Gran Queso has a yellow-ivory paste. It's a semi-hard, cow's milk cheese, aged six months before being released. It is slightly sweet, with an extra sharp tang. The inedible rind sports a red basket-weave pattern.

PAIRINGS: Try it with a sweet wine, like Port or Madeira. If that's not your style, put it up against a robust Spanish red like an old-style Rioja (plenty of tannins). Gran Queso also melts and blends quite well, so put it on top of pasta, or in a quesadilla.

3 comments:

pamela said...

Got this cheese from Whole foods in Seal Beach, California, girl behind the counter recommended it, but said it was a Spanish cheese. Did research... and here you are. thanks its a great cheese and have shared with others

Meredith said...

I didn't read very closely when picking it up at Safeway in Fairfax, VA - it said it was a "Spanish-style" cheese so I thought it was Spanish! I was pleased with it anyway; it was a very small piece and inexpensive, so I'm thinking of getting some more.

Dan said...

I'm eating this right now. It is not to salty or too sharp and has a very even flavor. I'm drinking a Fladgate 10 year tawny with it and am quite happy.