Many Midwestern blue cheeses go easy on the sharp attack that makes a blue taste “blue,” opting instead for a creamier, mellower spin on the format. The results are often delicious, if non-traditional. A new PastureLand blue cheese called Farmdog, however, is unapologetic — it is what it is.
To be more specific: It’s got a real zing to it, without any of the obnoxious ammonia flavor that can make a sharp blue off-putting and unpleasant. Instead, this raw milk cheese made with pasture-grazed cows’ milk has a deep, creamy, grass-inflected backbone. It’s a nice complement to the sharp zap of flavor provide by the blue cheese culture.
Aged in the cheese caves of Faribault, Farmdog is a strong local contribution to the tradition of blue cheese, and worth tasting — in salads, with honey, stuffed into dates, or just straight up on a cheese board. It’s available at many local co-ops.