Following last week’s Hoch Ybrig pick, we thought we’d stick around the Alps to sample a few other mountain cheeses this week. Today’s cheese is quite a different style than the Hoch, but it hails from just across the Swiss border in Northern Italy, where the happy cows graze in mountain meadows to produce Italy’s famed gorgonzola blues. The most common variety of gorgonzola is a younger style, Dolce, which translates as” “sweet” but refers more to the milky creaminess than a sugary sweet flavor. If you’re enjoying a salad or pizza with gorgonzola, it most likely is a Dolce. Mountain Gorgonzola, on the other hand, is aged at least six months, has a hard rind, firm bite, and sweet yet spicy flavor. 

 

Italian blue and green

Italian blue and green

The thick blue mold veins lend a wonderful sharp flavor to this cheese, and after softening at room temperature its firm but smooth bite almost reminds me of a camembert. A blue this flavorful is best served with a little honey or fruit for dessert, along with big reds or sweet dessert wines. If you’re craving salty, though, try some large bites along with citrus roasted Italian olives (as pictured). For more about Mountain Gorgonzola, read the account of Wegmans cheesemongers’ tour of the Gelmini family operation in Besate.

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