|Marieke Clove Gouda, painting by Mike Geno|
I've had a recent obsession with clove-studded Gouda. I know, I know, it doesn't sound appealing. But around the holidays, this curious cheese is delicious alongside mulled cider. A few weeks ago, I invited our painter friend Mike Geno over to help me dismantle a Wisconsin-themed Thanksgiving cheese board I put together -- and by "dismantle," I mean devour.
Mike was struck by the appearance of this cheese, which looks like a hunk of marble full of rusty nails. He took it home to paint, one more in his series of luxurious cheese portraits that will appear in the winter issue of Culture Magazine.
If you have a hankering to try this cheese, visit Holland's Family Cheese. This family-run dairy farm produces a variety of aged and flavored Goudas, and while I'm not usually a fan of gussied up cheeses, this one is both intriguing and balanced. It's made by Marieke and Rolf Penterman who moved from Holland to Wisconsin and are now producing award-winning cheese.