Cheese Series: Smoked Cheese

In our quest to know more about different cheeses, we went on the smoky side.

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Smoked Sulguni (Karoun)
Karoun is a California company specializing in Mediterranean cheeses such as the Ackawi we reviewed earlier.  The smoked sulguni tastes a bit liked a smoked provolone.  The smoke flavor is relatively mild compared to the Irish cheddar listed next.  Sulguni is a specialty of Georgia (Eastern Europe not Southeast US) and is a stretched curd cheese like mozzarella.  We didn’t find this sample to be as soft as most mozzarella, and it was perhaps a little more rubbery than a provolone.  It would be yummy used as you would a smoked provolone, but Georgians also use sulguni in stuffed mushrooms.

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Irish Knockanore Oak Smoked Cheddar
Knockanore is a family owned cheese company in Ireland.  They breed their own cows for cheese making.  This cheese has a strong cheddar flavor.  It is sharp and a little crumbly like a good aged cheddar.  The smoke does not overpower the cheddar flavor, so that the flavor is balanced.  It’s a powerfully flavored cheese….not for the faint of heart.  I can imagine sitting in an Irish pub with a Guiness, dark bread and some of this cheese!  Slainte!

Grafton Village Maple Smoked Vermont Raw Milk Cheddar
Grafton Village Cheese Company has been making cheese in Vermont since the 19th century.  This was very mild in cheddar flavor and in smoke.  It’s texture was smooth and creamy.  Of all these cheeses, this is probably the best to eat raw on crackers or rye with a smear of mustard or a slice of apple.

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