My cheese pick this week, Monforte Dairy’s Black Sheep, is tribute to all those who march to the beat of their own drummer, are often the odd man (or woman out) among others, or venture down the cheesy road less travelled. Ruth Klahsen, one such individual and a self-taught cheesemaker, understands artisan, and believes strongly in not rushing cheeses as they develop, “crafting cheese with care, and a commitment to excellence.” A healthy dose of patience, deep love of her craft (and each & every one of her cheeses, like her three sons), drives her cheese prowess.
Black Sheep Cheese is a soft, surface-ripened sheep’s milk cheese shaped like a pyramid with the top sliced off, inspired by France’s Valencay. Handmade, when young, it sports a vegetable ash coating dark as midnight. With age, a snow white bloomy rind develops, adding mild piquant flavors and protecting the creamy, rich, milky, earthy goodness inside. Now available at The Piggy Market, Black Sheep stands out from the crowd. Catch this, more Canadian top cheeses, and my Taste of Quebec tutored tasting at the Great Canadian Cheese Festival June 1-4, 2012 in Prince Edward County.
Cheese: Black Sheep
Producer: Monforte Dairy
Interesting Fact: Ash coating on a cheese is tasteless, protects the paste, promotes mold growth and balances out the acidity.
Enjoy! - Vanessa
Tags: Black Sheep cheese, Curd on the Street, Great Canadian Cheese Festival, Monforte Dairy, Monforte Dairy Black Sheep, Prince Edward County, Ruth Klahsen, Taste of Quebec, The Piggy Market, Valencay