5 Delectable Cheeses Made Right Here in America

Cheesemakers from all over the United States are making quite a name for themselves. American cheese is no longer thought of as the yellow piece of processed cheese individually wrapped in plastic, but finely crafted cheeses are being created in almost every state of the country. With fewer regulations on cheese than that of those from the Appellation d’origine contrôlée (AOC) in Europe, this allows American cheesemakers to create new recipes and invent all-new, unique cheeses. Here are five cheeses made right here in the U.S.A that will absolutely make your mouth water!

 

Fresh Mozzarella – BelGioioso, Wisconsin (FRESH)

This cheese is crafted in Wisconsin from fresh, local milk made only a few short hours after milking. This allows the cheese to be very fresh, flavorful, soft and delicate. Although this company produces large batches of their prize-winning Mozzarella, BelGioioso still has a “down home” feel and the family-business tradition is still there. BelGioioso Mozzarella is perfect sliced up in a Caprese salad or layered into your favorite pasta dish.

 

Bluebird – The Grey Barn & Farm at Martha’s Vineyard, Massachusetts (Aged for at least 60 days)

Made on a Martha’s Vineyard farm in Massachusetts with a small herd of 37 cows, Bluebird has the essence of the land it was made on: it’s creamy and fudgy, with a rustic, yet barny flavor and a slight touch of sea breeze. Many blue flavors are extremely sharp, but this one hosts a mellower vibe. Another difference, this blue cheese has a natural rind and comes in a block shape. According to their website, “Bluebird pairs well alongside a nice malty beer or melted atop a beautifully grilled steak.”

 

Pleasant Ridge Reserve – Uplands Cheese Company, Wisconsin (Aged 12 to 18 Months)

Pleasant Ridge Reserve is a cheese made only in the summer months, while the cows are grazing on fresh pasture. This Wisconsin native cheese is made in the tradition of Alpine cheeses, like a Gruyere or Beaufort. The summer milk is leaner and has more water content which provides a sweetness to the cheese and a natural, washed rine. According to Uplands’ website, “this resulting complexity – very rich and salty, with a long, fruity finish – makes Pleasant Ridge one of the most distinctive and celebrated cheeses in the country.” It is the only cheese to have won ACS Best of Show three times, and the only cheese to have ever won both of the major, national cheese competitions. Pleasant Ridge Reserve is often served as a table cheese, on its own or with bread, fruit and nuts, but it is also an excellent melting cheese and a fantastic garnish for salads, soups, gratins and omelets.

 

Smokey Blue – Rogue Valley Creamery, Oregon (Cave Aged a minimum of Six Months)

Smokey Blue – “The World’s First Smoked Blue Cheese” – is proof that Americans can be cheese geniuses. The raw milk cheese wheel is cold-smoked for 16 hours over local Oregon hazelnut shells. The result is a hint of the toasted, sweet richness of a campfire which balances the signature sharp, blue bite. Smokey blue is a great cheese for burgers and salads, or as a snack with a voluptuous zinfandel.

 

Cougar Gold – Washington State University Creamery, Washington (Aged at least One Year)

This American White Cheddar is crafted at Washington State University Creamery. Cougar Gold is notable because it is sold in a 30 oz. can and claims to last indefinitely when properly refrigerated. This rich, white cheddar cheese has a smooth, firm texture. With age, the unopened can becomes more flavorful, sharp, dry and crumbly. This classic, American-made delight goes great on crackers, as well as used in recipes like soups, salads, plates of pasta and cakes.