This week, Serious Eats put out a list of 13 Cheeses Everyone Should Know. When I saw the link appear on Twitter, I had to click and peruse. At first, the list seemed a little basic – feta, mozzarella, Monterey jack – but then I thought back to a convo I had recently with my writer-friend Sam. He told me he didn’t think he could name ten cheeses. My jaw dropped.
Sometimes I forget that I live on a cheese-centric planet and that not everyone orbits this little star. So, I decided to create my own cheese list – 13 Cheeses Everyone Should Try. I don’t care if you're a complete novice or an intrepid aficionado. If you try even one of these cheeses, you will see the world differently. Your tastebuds will jump several I.Q. points. Your heart will open and a joyful cuckoo will fly out.
Why? These cheeses will show you how good cheese can be, and I think they have universal appeal. I've served all of these to finicky nervous types, and I promise that these wedges will not alienate you. Next time you need to feel revitalized, don’t buy eye cream. Buy good cheese.
1. Cabot Clothbound Cheddar: Made in Vermont, this is the one cheese that never fails to make Americans rethink block cheddar.
2. Midnight Moon: You don’t need a nightcap, you just need a nibble of this firm goat cheese that tastes like candy corns.
7. Parmigiano Reggiano: Get the real stuff and drizzle honey on it. If you can find Cravero brand, you’ll fall backwards.
8. Winnimere: Like gooey fondue, but wrapped in bark. Hard to find but worth begging for.
9. Montchevre Cabrie: Trust me. Goat Brie from Wisconsin. When ripe, it’s better than fudge.
10. Comté: Look for Marcel Petit brand. A smooth, glorious Alpine. (Pair with a pumpkin ale, a recommendation from Hunter Fike.)
13. Evalon: A new beauty with a wild number of awards. Think: ungoaty Gouda.
All of these cheeses can be ordered online. I'm partial to Di Bruno Bros. in Philadelphia, but I also recommend ordering from Murray's, Artisanal, and Formaggio Kitchen. You can also buy some of these cheeses directly from the cheesemakers via their websites.
If you find one you like, let me know. If I've led you astray, shoot me a dirty look. If I missed one of your faves, for goodness sake, tell me this instant.