Charleston Artisan Cheesehouse crafts and ages a range of cheeses on location in Charleston, South Carolina. Since 2014 the creamery has been owned by chefs Greg Tatis and Monica Jaramillo, who specialize in recipe development and cheesemaking, as well as by Pete and Heather Holmes, who specialize in sales and marketing. The four owners strive to create wholesome cheeses that inspire the joy of eating locally produced, artisanal foods. The cultures used in production are chosen to create cheeses with taste and quality characteristics comparable to raw/thermized milk cheeses.
Milk used in production of the cheeses is sourced from Hickory Hill Milk, which has been owned and operated by Watson Dorn and his family the same land for 20 generations. Cows graze freely on pasture for 18 hours a day, and antibiotics are never added to feed. Milk is hormone free and non-homogenized, and pasteurization is performed at a low temperature in an effort to maintain as many of the milk’s natural enzymes as possible.
Dutch Chocolate is a flavored version of Charleston Cheesehouse’s flagship Battery Park. Described as a cross between a brie and a farm cheese, the production process for these these bloomy-rinded discs is completely done by hand, from pouring the milk into the vat, to molding, flipping, wrapping and labeling
Inspired by an Ecuadorian tradition of drinking hot cocoa alongside cheese, this cheese reveals a gorgeous brown marbling beneath its fuzzy white rind, due to the addition of single-origin cocoa to the curds before molding. Discs are aged from three to four weeks.
The single-origin cocoa used in production of this cheese is not very bitter; rather it possesses a variety of tropical notes. Although no sweetener is added, the cocoa gives the cheese a lightly sweet touch. Aromas of chocolate are present on the nose and in the aftertaste, however flavor is only very mildly chocolaty, with floral and tree bark aromas detectable.
Pair it with a dry and spicy wine such as Tempranillo, or with a stout. Charleston’s cheesemakers also suggest serving it with berry compote and candied pecans, or in a grilled cheese sandwich.