Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Midnight Moon

The superior quality of the Cypress Grove Chevre (no, they don't use the accent grave) product line is probably unmatched among American cheesemakers today. Their Midnight Moon is one of the many reasons why.

Midnight Moon is a pale, firm, cheddar-style goat's milk cheese that is aged at least six months. It has a wonderully rich, creamy and nutty flavor.

The milk comes from a dairy in the Netherlands and does much of its aging in Europe before coming to Cypress Grove's northern California headquarters. The curds are cooked during the cheesemaking process, which accounts for much of its firmness.

The cheese was awarded the Best New Product in Show prize in 2002 at the International Fancy Food & Confection Show and was a Finalist for Best Cheese there a year later.

If you want to find out what high quality artisanal cheese tastes like, sample this or any other fine product from Cypress Grove. (Cf. here, here, here and here for my reviews of other Cypress Grove products.)

I enjoy Midnight Moon most on a slightly buttery cracker. Cypress Grove recommends pairing it with cured meats, fresh fruit or fig preserves. It pairs well with a variety of wines, including Chardonnay, Cabernet Franc, dry Sherry, Gewurtztraminer, Zinfandel and Cabernet Sauvignon.

The only negative thing about Cypress Grove products is that they are more expensive than most other cheeses in my local cheese purveyor's cheese case. I understand that this is often a necessary feature of high quality food products, but I would eat a lot more Cypress Grove Chevre if it were cheaper.

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