The Ultimate Guide to Our Different Cheeses

The Ultimate Guide to Our Different Cheeses

With so many different types of cheeses in the world to choose from, navigating it all can take decades. Our family knows cows, so cheese has come naturally. From Toma cheese to gouda, they each have their own distinct story and value.

The cheeses made here at Point Reyes Farmstead Cheese Company each have their own extraordinary flavors and textures to be discovered. Every cheese has its own taste, pairings, and processes that we love to explore and share with you.

With each cheese having its own story and value, we figured it’d be best that we provide all of our customers with an ultimate guide to uncovering it all.

 

Blues

 

Not to play favorites, but this variety of cheese holds a special place in our hearts. Blue cheeses are a kind of semi-soft cheese well recognized ​​for the aesthetic of bluish (or greenish) veins of mold. You may be thinking: doesn’t the presence of mold mean that food is rotten? Well not exactly. 

Many kinds of cheese like bloomy rinds (Quinta) and blue cheese (Bay Blue and Original Blue) depend on mold growing in the right place and at the right time to become the delicious snack we enjoy so much. Cheesemakers intentionally use friendly microorganisms, like our preferred blue mold bacteria, Penicillium Roqueforti, to create the flavors and textures we love and can safely digest.

Cheesy Tip: Of course, some molds are not meant to be eaten. If you find a small patch of exterior white or bluish mold feel free to cut that piece off your wedge and continue to enjoy it. Although, if your cheese wedge has taken on a pink or orange mold- it’s time to toss that one and start fresh. 

 

Original Blue

 

Original Blue has been produced on our family farm since 2000. California’s classic style blue cheese is rindless, all-natural, and gluten-free. 

Original Blue is ultra-creamy with a medium-strong blue mold flavor. The addictive flavor is made to be bold with hints of sweet milk and a peppery finish.

You can sprinkle crumbles of Original Blue on your salad, steak or burger, or add a chunk to your charcuterie line-up. When melted, the cheese adds a new and exciting layer of flavor to pasta, risotto, scrambled eggs, mashed potatoes, and more. 

Pair this sweet and peppery blue with a malt-centric beer or a vintage port and you’ll be sold. 

 

Bay Blue

 

Inspired by the sheer natural beauty of our coastal climate and locale, Bay Blue is a rustic-style blue cheese with a natural rind. It is known for its mellow flavor and sweet, salted caramel finish.

Bay Blue is aged for 90 days before being ready to be served. The cheese has more of a fudge-like texture than the Original Blue and is earthy with notes of malty toasted grain.

We like to call Bay Blue the star of an after-dinner cheese course. This blue is perfect for savoring alongside a glass of Vintage Port, Chenin Blanc, an earthy Pinot Noir, or even a Barrel-Aged Scotch. 

In the kitchen, the options are endless. Shaved onto poached pears or grilled peaches, Bay Blue will grant you a new understanding of all the possibilities of blue cheese. 

Cheesy Tip: We’ve collected a few recipes for you to explore but you should always do some testing of your own.

 

Toma

 

In Italian, Toma means “wheel of cheese made by the farmer herself.” As a women-owned small business, we feel that our most versatile, any time, any table cheese is well-deserving of this name.

Toma is an all-natural, pasteurized, semi-hard table cheese with a waxed rind. It is creamy in texture with a buttery flavor and grassy tang finish. Made with Dutch cultures, Toma has similarities to a traditional Havarti or young Gouda. Our inspiration was an Italian-style village cheese perfect for enjoying breakfast, lunch or dinner.

We offer three different flavored variations of Toma: TomaTruffle, TomaProvence, and TomaRashi. 

 

TomaTruffle

 

TomaTruffle is the perfect combination of classic Toma paired with the aromatic flavors of Italian Black Truffles from Umbria.  Reminiscent of undergrowth, fresh strawberries, dried fruit, and a hint of cocoa, the earthy flavor marries beautifully with the buttery richness of Toma.

TomaTruffle is great as a snacking cheese or perfect for melting on eggs, sprinkled on warm potato chips, or just enjoyed on its own with a glass of dry sparkling wine.

 

TomaRashi

 

TomaRashi, with its blend of heat, umami, and nutty flavors, is a total standout in our Toma lineup.  

The key to the flavor is Shichimi Togarashi, a Japanese spice blend containing nori, toasted sesame, poppy and hemp seeds, chili flakes, and ginger.  The result is a gentle heat that warms your palate gradually, making you want more!

TomaRashi adds an unexpected punch to every meal, especially Mexican dishes. It’s a great addition when melted into eggs, wrapped in seaweed for a snack. Enjoy this cheese with a gin & tonic, light pilsner, or a Japanese-style beer.

 

TomaProvence

 

The third distinctly different flavored version of our popular and endlessly versatile Toma is the TomaProvence

TomaProvence is full of savory Mediterranean flavor. Complementing the creamy butter notes of Toma, we've added Herbs de Provence. Our blend includes Rosemary, Basil, Marjoram, Savory, and Wild Thyme.

TomaProvence was made to transport you to France, allowing you to ndulge in the provincial lifestyle. A great snacking cheese, we suggest pairing it with olives, a fresh baguette, or a buttery chardonnay. 

 

Cornelia

 

From Point Reyes to New York and back, Cornelia starts as a pint-sized wheel of our Toma. From there, while still “green,” it goes to the renowned Murray’s Caves in Long Island. 

In Long Island, Cornelia goes through a lengthy and thoughtful process with a team of Cavemasters who’ve established an affinage (the art of cheese aging) plan.

The process of washing the wheels with b linen bacteria and moving it to different aging environments results in a slightly sticky rind that develops an orange/pink hue, sometimes mottled with grey and bluish molds. Cornelia offers a uniquely funky, pungent smell and developed mushroomy, umami taste we love! 

The overall flavor is beautifully buttery with a silky, melting mouthfeel. At room temperature there are notes of roasted peanuts and buttered toast.

Cornelia’s earthy, buttery, and herby flavors pair well with glasses of Chianti, Merlot, or Pinot Noir.

Gouda

 

Gouda cheese is hand-crafted using traditional Dutch methods and is one of the most special cheeses we produce. Gouda is aged for 16-18 months and then sliced into wedges that are immediately and individually vacuum-sealed.

Gouda is creamy in texture but slightly crystalized, delivering pops of complex flavor. You'll enjoy deep flavors of toasted hazelnuts, caramel, butterscotch, and cooked cream in every bite.

The cheese’s complexity pairs well with simple additions like hazelnuts, toasted almonds, scotch, bourbon, sweeter white wines, and most craft beers. 

We personally love to drizzle our slices with artisanal honey and use Gouda in a variety of our recipes. Some of our favorite recipes include a Grilled Romaine Caesar with Gouda and Roasted Asparagus with Aged Gouda.

 

White Cheddar

 

White cheddar is a variety of cheddar cheese that has not been colored. Point Reyes White Cheddar is made to our standards by a master cheesemaker.  Each block is aged for one year on the farm at Point Reyes Farmstead and is carefully selected for flavor and quality. It’s a complex cheese with a creamy yet sharp flavor.

White Cheddar is great on its own, with pears, apples or stone fruit, melted on a burger, grated into Mexican foods, included in your favorite grilled panini or as the star in mac and cheese.  The sharp flavor of the cheese allows it to pair well with spices like caraway, celery seeds, chili powder, cumin, paprika, and red pepper.

When it comes to beverages, White Cheddar pairs well with practically everything. Sip on some chardonnay, pinot gris, rose, an American pale lager, IPA, pilsner, or barrel-aged scotch as you munch on our sharp white.

 

Quinta

 

Quinta means Fifth in Spanish and just so happens to be the fifth product in our core line-up. 

Quinta is wrapped in Spruce bark that has been infused with the essence of CA Bay Laurel. 

The interior texture of our Quinta is silky-smooth and the rind is fluffy, yet slightly firm with Bay leaves embedded on the top. 

The Bay Laurel we use is indigenous to the region and ever-present on our farm in Point Reyes. We’re happy to share our farm and everything that’s on it with you, including our California Bay.

The younger wheels have a custardy texture with a slight buttermilk freshness and a vanilla cream finish. The more mature wheels are softer (and spoonable!) in texture.  

The rich flavor of Quinta begins with fresh creamery butter and then expands to notes of woodsy-mustard and wild mushroom, with a CA Bay Laurel herbaceousness in the finish. 

No matter the level of ripeness, the flavors intensify as you enjoy the cheese closer to the bark-wrapped perimeter. Don't shy away from trying the rind as well. The flavor is delicious with even more CA Bay Laurel and earthy, mushroomy notes

Quinta is meant to be enjoyed at room temperature in a single sitting by removing a portion of the top rind and digging in with a small spoon or cheese spreader. 

Spoon Quinta on top of nori sheets, dunk in roasted strawberries, or dip roasted vegetables in it for the perfect fondue. Sparkling wine is Quinta’s best friend, and will make you want to go back in for more cheese with every sip. 

 

Take Part In Our Joy

 

Take this guide as an invitation to start exploring the unique flavors of our cheeses inspired by our small, family-run dairy farm. 

Our pairings are simply suggestions, but cheese is always best when served with what you and your loved ones enjoy most. We encourage exploring the wildest combinations to make recipes of your own.

Point Reyes Farmstead Cheese Company is our way of carrying on our family heritage, honoring the land we love so much, celebrating our passion for farm fresh food, and sharing it all with the people we consider our extended family – cheese lovers all across the country.

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