Tag Archives: Swiss cheese

Happy National Cheese Lover’s Day with a New Cheese from Beekman 1802. Introducing Mubock

Beekman 1802 Mubock Cheese

Beekman 1802 Mubock Cheese

As most House Mouse readers know, I am an avid follower of The Fabulous Beekman Boys, especially their cheese, Beekman 1802 Blaak. I read their blog, cheered their victory on The Amazing Race, and secretly hope to get an invitation to Josh and Brent’s upcoming wedding (hint, hint). So imagine my shock when I discovered only this month that they had created another cheese, Mubock, back in September! How could I have missed it? I must have been in a cheese coma or something. Fortunately, I was able to secure one of the last half-pound squares of Mubock before the Mercantile ran out. Well, that, along with a wheel of Blaak, a box of Salty Goat Fudge Cookies and a jar of Autumn Harvest Honey. Go big or go home!

So, why call it Mubock? According to Beekman 1802, the name is a play on the half cow milk (mu) and half goat milk (bock) combination used to make the cheese. Bock could also refer to the dark, strong lager, Three Philosophers beer from Ommegang Brewery that is brushed at the end of the aging process.

While all that is interesting, I really wanted to get to the tasting, so after allowing the Mubock to get to room temperature, I sliced some off and went in for the sniff test. My nose instantly picked up on the hops from the beer, as well as a sweet, salty aroma. Honestly, I wasn’t sure how I felt about it, but the nose of a cheese can often be so different from its actual flavor, so I wasn’t too concerned. There was also some confusion over its appearance. Described as a cheddar-style cheese, Mubock really more resembles a baby swiss. Even the texture had a spongy, springy swiss-cheese feel. Finally, I tasted it and it was… interesting. Very intense, with a pretty pronounced beer flavor. Did I like it? To be honest, I wasn’t sure. I thought maybe I was missing something, so I reached out to Dr. Brent Ridge, one half of the Beekman Boys, to see if I could get some guidance:

THM: When we spoke a coupe of years ago, you were pretty adamant about not creating another cheese. What changed your mind?
BR: We still are primarily focused on Blaak. We just thought it would be a fun experience to come up with one different cheese idea each year for a Limited Edition. It keeps us learning.

THM: How big was this batch, and will we be seeing Mubock next season at the Mercantile and online?
BR: This year, we produced about 1800 pounds of Mubock.  Unfortunately, we have sold out. As we intend all of our limited editions, we are going to retire them after each year, so we don’t plan to make this again.

THM: The hoppy flavor is pretty prominent in Mubock. How did you decide on Three Philosophers Beer?
BR: We chose 3 Phils because it is one of our favorite brews from Ommegang.

THM: The flavor is very bold and intense. What pairings do you suggest?

BR: Mubock was aged for eight months, which creates a very bold, sharp cheese.  Goat milk especially gets sharp very quickly.  The texture is slightly chewy/rubbery – kind of like a swiss cheese.  We actually recommend Mubock as a melting cheese.  It’s amazing on grilled cheese sandwiches, in omelets and in soups (we have a great soup recipe with it on the website).

A melting cheese… of course! Immediately after hearing Brent’s response, I grabbed a baguette, some aged balsamic, a bit of prosciutto and toasted it up. What a difference some heat makes. The intense flavor from the Mubock simmers down a bit, yet the hoppy taste still has some punch. It melded perfectly with the saltiness of the cured meat, while the aged balsamic’s sweet/tart component just balanced the whole bite out. My boyfriend actually preferred it without the prosciutto, which was pretty tasty as well.

I have just enough Mubock left to try out the soup recipe, although my little creation has become my favorite after-work snack, so it may not last. While it is sad that Mubock will not be making a second appearance, Blaak may still be available on the Beekman website. Even better, head to Sharon Springs and pick some up direct from the Mercantile.

Stay Cheesy and Happy National Cheese Lover’s Day!

Update: Blaak is out for the season, but will be returning, hopefully in July. Be sure to get on the wait list to get a wheel. The cookies and honey are still available so be sure to check those out.

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An Ode to Cheese for National Poetry Month

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The Missing Piece by Shel Silverstein

My parents were – and still are – voracious readers, and they encouraged my sister and I to do the same as much as possible. While my sister read on occasion, I would get lost in a bookstore for hours, curl up on the giant square pillows the local shop had strewn all over the children’s section and just sink into a pile of books. My mom volunteered at our school library sometimes and was always hip to the latest trend and bestselling authors, so she would offer suggestions all the time. My dad was not as in touch with the adolescent brain so he would pick titles that appealed to him or chose covers that looked cool and distinct. Continue reading

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Max McCalman explains why mysterious Blaui Geiss is worth the $78.00 price tag

Blaui Geiss from Artisanal Premium Cheese

As most cheese lovers know, fabulous fromage does not come cheap and with good reason. The care, effort and timing that go into a single wheel of cheese can make the difference between a splendid table cheese and a complete disaster. For the most part, the cost per pound of cheese reflects that quality and care, but sometimes a cheese is so pricey even the most enthusiastic turophile has to ask why. One such cheese is the rare Blaui Geiss ringing in at $78.00 per six-inch wheel. Continue reading

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Cheese snuffs out cigarettes at commissaries

Image: Stars and Stripes

An iconic early photos of one of our nation’s military men depicts a war-ridden soldier smirking at the camera with a cigarette dangling precariously from his lips. Soldiers like our tobacco-toting friend were the heroes of their day, America’s role models and protectors.

Fast-forward a couple of decades and the world’s view of smoking has changed dramatically. As it’s no longer cool to take that drag of smoke, soldiers have evidently turned to a new addiction – cheese! According to the government’s Defense Commissary Agency, cheese wedged out cigarettes by over one million dollars in sales over the past year, making it the number one item sold in military commissaries. Why the turn from smokes to Stilton? Good question.
For more on this cheesy victory, check out the article from Karen Jowers of the Navy Times here.

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Recipe: Black Creek Extra Sharp Cheddar and Pancetta Quiche

I usually make reservations when it comes to meals, although I have been known to go rogue now and then and attempt to cook. More often than not, the recipes I choose are simple comfort dishes that should be edible if not perfect. Quiche doesn’t come to mind when thinking simple, however I felt I was due for a challenge. As it turns out, quiche isn’t so hard with the right ingredients. (recipe after the jump) Continue reading

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A Holey Experience: One woman’s visit to Appenzeller

Ever wonder where to go for a truly Swiss-tacular time? Well wonder no more since Annie Scott, avid traveler and writer, has found the Appenzeller nirvana.  Annie recently visited the Appenzeller cheese dairy in Stein, Appenzellerland where she discovered everything a person could ever want to know about this holey (or not so holey as the case may be) fromage.

Check out her article from Gadling travel website for all the cheesy details.

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Quick Taste: Wildspitz Bio

Whenever I visit Morgan and York specialty food and wine shop in Ann Arbor, I always ask “What’s new?” and am rarely disappointed. This recent trip was no exception.

Wildspitz Bio is a funky blend of cow and goat milk with an intense nutty taste.  Subtle at first, the flavor builds toward the back of the tongue and continues to become more assertive with each bite.

As with most semi-strong cheeses, I would recommend staying clear of any citrus or highly acidic fruits when eating this fun-sounding cheese. Pair with just about any red wine or dark beer and perhaps some salty almonds or cashews.

Wildspitz Bio is an elusive cheese, so be sure to grab it when found as it is a  wonderful substitute for the standard Swiss selection on any cheese plate.

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