What it is: An assortment of '60s-themed chèvre disks, perfect for holiday entertaining or gifting
Bonnie: From now through the holidays, we’ll be sharing with you some foods and gadgets to enjoy by yourself, serve to guests or bring as hostess gifts. As always, we’d love your feedback on our selections.
As a regular reader of BOTB, you know that we love and often recommend cheeses, like the new ’60s-themed Cypress Grove’s Flashback Six-Pack, a six-disk, five-flavor assortment of fresh chèvre (goat cheese). Purchase as the six-pack that comes with some John-Lennon style glasses. Or buy one or more the five flavors of 4-ounce chèvre disks.
The assortment includes two disks of Purple Haze (flavored with lavender and wild fennel pollen), and one disk each of PsycheDillic (flavored with dill pollen and dried dill leaves), Herbs de Humboldt (flavored with hand-mixed blend of Herbs de Provence), Ms. Natural (plain) and my favorite, Sgt. Pepper (flavored with four different peppers plus chili pepper threads).
As with all fresh chèvre, serve it bare spread on crackers, crusty bread, fresh vegetables or fruit slices, or serve it topped with a favorite sweet jam. Or substitute it for mayo and cream cheese with little-to-no change in a recipe.
Some other ideas for you:
• toss a four-ounce disk with fresh pasta (plus add a few splashes of pasta water), diced fresh fall tomatoes and a chiffonade of basil
• toss a four-ounce disk with fresh pasta (plus add a few splashes of pasta water), sautéed red pepper and shrimp;
• add a dollop to spice up your burger; add leaf lettuce and sliced tomatoes
• crumble on fresh mixed baby greens; add sliced strawberries, toasted pecans and balsamic reduction
• spoon chèvre into pitted Medjool dates
• spread on a bagel; add lox, thinly sliced red onion and capers
• substitute for mayo in your favorite tuna recipe
• top off any pizza; add shredded mozzarella, roasted eggplant, green olives and garlic
• spoon into a fresh fig, wrap in a single slice of bacon and secure with a toothpick; grill and baste with balsamic reduction
• spread on smoked salmon, roll and slice, then serve atop cucumber
Bryan: Cypress Grove may now be a recognized name in the artisanal cheese world, but the company started small. Mary Keehn began raising Alpine goats in an attempt to provide a healthy source of milk for her children. Quickly discovering a natural talent with goats (what a random skill to uncover), Mary’s goats won a number of awards and Mary become widely recognized as one of America’s premier dairy-goat breeders.
What next? Well, why not turn that milk into cheese? Mary began making cheese with her surplus milk and by 1983 turned that hobby into a new business making high quality, artisanal cheeses. Though the progress was slow, the steady nature of Cypress Grove’s growth allowed it to take special care of its products and its customers. With such patience, hard work and a commitment to quality, Cypress Grove developed a loyal following. Soon the Cypress Grove label had become synonymous with goat cheese, with a number of their fresh, aged and ripened cheeses receiving international awards for excellence.
Cypress Grove produces ripened cheeses (the smelly kind), creamline cheeses (wax-wrapped semi-softs) and some novelty cheeses (like the Truffle Tremor). While this selection is impressive (we’ve written about the Humboldt Fog before) the real showcase of the collection is the hippie-inspired fresh goat cheeses: Sgt Pepper, Herbs de Humboldt, Purple Haze, PsycheDillic and Ms. Natural. If one has the munchies, how can you possibly choose between such wonderful options? Thankfully, you can have a goat cheese six pack mailed directly to your door. Better yet? It comes with a pair of funky John Lennonesque glasses.
You may say that I like goat cheese
But I’m not the only one
I hope someday you’ll join us
And you won’t have to pick just one
Eric: In my view, we can’t tout Cypress Grove’s cheese, or for that matter the company, enough. Hands-down, Cypress Grove Humboldt Fog is among my top three cheese — current and all-time — and it’s not even the main topic of discussion this week.
Instead, the company that has provided me with one of my favorite cheeses has now also created a six pack of its distinctively flavored, and uniquely named chèvre (goat cheese). The Cypress Grove Flashback Family Gift Pack is a no-brainer for any “cheese-o-phile.” The company might be small, but its ambition and dedication to its craft is a testament to how truly delicious goat cheese can be. Start snacking!
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