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Pine River 13-year Cheddar

Cheese: Pine River Dairy 13-year “Super-Sharp” Cheddar

Who: Pine River Dairy 

Where: Manitowac, Wisconsin

Milk: cow, pasteurized

Rind: waxed

Texture: firm, flaky

Shape: waxed cube, 1lb

Flavor: not particularly sharp, a concentrated rather generic cheddar flavor

This family-run cheese maker manufactures what I call “tourist cheese”. That’s not to denegrate their work (though Montgomery’s Cloth-Bound this is not – not even Tillamook), rather, this is one of many more volume-oriented cheesemakers who make dozens of inexpensive “flavored” cheeses aimed at the tourist trade in America’s Dairyland that is Wisconsin. Think garlic and dill cheese curds.

The flavor is actually pretty mild, lacking the tang of most “very-sharp” cheeses. It also lacks the sweet grassiness and herbal qualities of the best examples. It reminds one a bit of what you might call “cheddar flavoring”. It does have a considerable amount of that crystalline crunch that you expect from most very old cheese.




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