There’s More to Goat Cheese
Than Fresh Chevre
Happy Fromage Friday! I know fresh chevre is the tits in the summertime, especially alongside fresh fruit, but if you’ve never tried an aged goat cheese you’re really missing out. Today’s cheese is a 100-day-aged goat milk cheese from Sardinia, Italy; it’s much saltier, richer, and firmer than the fresh, spreadable chevre you’re used to. I got to put this cheese in the mouths of hungry people last week, when I visited my sister of the curd Katie Potts in her hometown of Petoskey, Michigan. I was there to a) vacation by the crystal clear water and b) check out Katie’s baby on-the-way, Petoskey Cheese, a cut-to-order cheese shop and education center in the heart of the town.
Katie is a powerhouse whose spunky personality and miniature size remind one of a Nubian Dwarf Goat, possibly the cutest of all dairy animals (and business women). It’s no wonder that most of Katie’s favorite cheeses come from goat milk, including Pantaleo, the very first wheel split open at Petoskey Cheese.
Pantaleo is one of the few aged goat cheeses from Italy. It smells bright and a little waxy, with mouthwatering flavors of lemon-flavored salt and pink peppercorns. The paste is ivory in color and firm enough to shave onto salads or pasta, yet crumbles across the palate when enjoyed in larger chunks. I love pairing it with a complex Italian white wine, such as Savanese, but it’s also delightful with a touch of double dark chocolate fudge straight out of Macinac Island.
Forever Cheese Co.
Milk: pasteurized goat
Provenance: Sardinia, Italy
Cost: about $20.00 a pound
Palate level: beginner
Profile: salty, lemony, crumbly
Pairings: Italian white wines, dry sherry, Marcona almonds, chocolate