Sternenberger Mutschli is made by Urs Preisig, a second generation cheesemaker who took over from his father at Käserei Preisig a few years ago. The cheesemaking facility is located in Sternenberg in the mountainous canton (region) of Zurich, Swtizerland. Sternenberg, which means “Star Mountain” sits at an elevation of 900m (2700 ft) above sea level and the local community is small at just over 300 inhabitants. There, Preisig works with two local dairy herds, buying in their milk to make his cheeses; a larger format wheel simply known as Sternenberg and the smaller “Mutschli” which simply means “little cheese. Production of the Mutschli takes place after the larger wheels are made and using the leftover milk. After the curd is cut and placed in the hoops, it is allowed to drain under its own weigh rather than being pressed. This results in a higher moisture cheese and a semi-soft texture. During the two month maturing process which takes place on wooden boards, the cheeses are washed regularly with both brine and annato - a natural red vegetable coloring.
The result is a cheese with a deep orange/red rind. Aromas are slightly savory and vegetal. Flavors are grassy and nutty with just a hint of barnyard, becoming stronger and more assertive with age.