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Tuesday Tasting: Sartori Cheeses


Each week we taste a sampling of cheeses in our Cambridge office and discuss their flavors, textures, and our general impressions of them. Yum!


Aged Goat
Goat’s Milk – Wisconsin

 Amy – This cheese stood out because of its almost pure white color and its tangy, yogurt-like smell. It has a dry, pasty consistency and a complex, funky flavor with hints of tropical fruit and coconut.
Lauren – My favorite of the cheeses we tried, for sheer novelty value! I loved the finer-grained texture,and bold yougurt-tang smell. I was (pleasantly!) surprised to detect notes of coconut, along with some sweetness from aging.
Kate E. – You can definitely smell the tart flavor before you taste it. It’s sweet and tart and moist.

Final thought by Kate E.:

This is the goat cheese for people who don’t think they like goat cheese.


Asiago
Cow’s Milk – Wisconsin

 Lauren – A whole different animal than what they put on breadsticks at The Olive Garden… this Asiago has a slight tanginess and a milkiness that lingers.
Amy – I found this cheese a little rubbery in texture, but the flavors were great: tangy hay, salty butteriness, and a slight sweetness to the finish. 
Kate E. – The asiago is smooth and soft and rich. The flavor is gentle and buttery. I’d put this on everything.

Final thought by Amy:

It’s quite mild, but I think it would be a great melting cheese for breakfast sandwiches or a grilled cheese.


Black Pepper
Cow’s Milk – Wisconsin

 Amy – I love this cheese! The interior is creamy, grassy, and has a slight sweetness of caramel or grape (a little reminiscent of port). The depth of these flavors really stands up the the bright bite of the pepper.
Kate E. – This cheese had a bit of a fruity taste, which went well with the pepper on the rind. The texture was a little oily. All I could think of was how well this cheese would go on a Ham & Cheese sandwich.
Lauren – This cheese was very well-balanced, and would make a killer counterpart to some salted meat. Along with a creamy, caramel paste, I also detected subtle floral notes alongside the black pepper: rose, juniper and pine.

Final thought by Stephanie:

I immediately started imagining making grilled cheeses with tomato and ham when I tasted it.


Chai
Cow’s Milk – Wisconsin

 Kate E. – Disclaimer: I love chai. If you like the numeggy, cinnamony, slightly-peppery flavor of the tea, you’ll like this. It’s sweet, but a little chalky as it breaks.
Amy – The buttery and grassy notes of this cheese were slightly overwhelmed by the chai flavor of the rind. I did like the nutmeg and cardamom that came through and flavored the interior of the cheese.
Lauren – Not subtle, but very sweet, with pockets of moist honey flavor, and a hint of pink peppercorns. Standard chai flavors of ginger, cardamom, anise, and clove, were also apparent- not only in the rind, but throughout the paste as well.


MontAmore
Cow’s Milk – Wisconsin

 Kate E. – The texture is really smooth, except for a some large crystals that shake things up. It crumbles, almost like slate, when it’s broken in half. There is a tangy taste that lingers after you’ve already swallowed.
Lauren – This cheese was aged and nutty, with some good umami flavors at the start, followed by a tangy, slatey minerality and some nice crystalization!
Amy – This firm, somewhat crumbly cheese has yummy crystals distributed throughout and a very sharp, tangy, almost metallic flavor that I love.

Final though by Amy:

Fans of cheddar will enjoy it a lot.


Pastorale Blend
Sheep’s Milk – Wisconsin

 Lauren – A smoked-paprika rind immediately set the stage for a more rustic, earthy, and smoky cheese. 
Kate E. – I couldn’t taste the sheep in this one, so I’ll consider that a win for the meeker cheese-eater. It’s very subtle and smokey (thanks to the smoked paprika), but the closer I got to the rind, the more it reminded me of a very peaty Scotch.
Amy – This firm, creamy cheese has a peaty, mossy flavor with a touch of barnyard to it. The fact that it’s a sheep’s milk cheese it really only noticeable from the smell, which has just a hint of sheep funkiness to it.

Final thought by Lauren:

With a sheepy, briny funk, this was another of my favorites.

Sarvecchio
Cow’s Milk – Wisconsin

 Stephanie – Sarveccio, with its tangy bite and crunchy crystals, has long been a favorite of mine.
Amy – I loved the creamy, almost blush color of this cheese and its firm, craggy texture. The flavor is deep and earthy, slightly bitter, and woody or barky. It has a long finish, the flavor sticking around long after you’ve swallowed. 
Kate E. – This one packs a lot of flavor. Very nutty and salty. Its flavor lasts a long time after its gone.
Lauren – A bit less moist, and more Parmesan-esque. Has an even-keeled character, with a slightly sour finish.

Final thought by Amy:

This is a cigar-smoking grandpa of a cheese.

Amy Scheuerman

Amy Scheuerman—culture's former web director—spent eight years in North Carolina where she developed a love of barbecue and biscuits before moving up north to get a degree in nutrition. She now works at the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum.

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