Rogue River Blue
David Gremmels and Cary Bryant bought Rogue Creamery on a handshake from Ig Vella (Vella Cheese Company) in 2002. Rogue was originally founded in 1935 by Ig's father, Tom, who ran it as a successful creamery for many years. Upon Tom's death in 1998 (aged 100), Ig took over and then finally sold it to David and Cary in 2002, with the stipulation that they would continue to make the creamery’s signature cheeses according to tradition.
Today, Rogue Creamery is a thriving business that produces a variety of award winning cheeses in addition to the originals that the Vella family created. Milk for production comes from Delmar at Rogueview Dairy. Delmar has 70 acres with 1/4 mile frontage on the river - a beautiful piece of property in a valley that used to be loaded with small dairies of 15-20 cows. Delmar started with 90 cows and has grown to 200, where he has held for the past 15 years. The milkers go out on pasture daily, when weather permits, (from March-October), but are not exclusively grass-fed, as they also get hay and grain.
Aged for between eight months and one year, Rogue's multiple award winning Rogue River Blue is an unusual and delicious raw milk cheese, wrapped in brandy-soaked grape leaves.
Aromas are of earth, cellar, sherry and port. The texture is dotted with crunchy bits (crystalized amino acids) that give it a slightly granular mouthfeel.
Flavors are incredibly complex. Notes of butterscotch and caramel are balanced by a pronounced tang and hints of spice from the blue mold. There are also savory, vegetal and alcohol notes imparted by the leaves.
Pair it with a sparkling Shiraz, a Barley Wine, a Double IPA, or an Imperial Stout.