Cheese from Georgia

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When I was in Birmingham for Food Blog South, I met a nice guy named Mat Willey who works for a company called Sweet Grass Dairy. “We make cheese,” he explained, “in Georgia.”

Cheese from Georgia? Even though I lived in Georgia for 7 years (Atlanta, to be exact), I wasn’t particularly excited about eating cheese from The Peach State. I mean, I wasn’t against the idea, but it wasn’t causing me to hop up and down with excitement. He kindly offered to send me some cheese in the mail (a risky proposition, but there are ice packs) and I almost forgot all about it until the cheese arrived at my door.

The cheese came with a nice note, but don’t worry: I didn’t let that influence me.

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Instead, I told Craig–who’s the world’s #1 cheese lover–that we’d be having cheese for dinner. This was the night I served that kohlrabi and those sweet potato wedges, so just in case you thought we were super healthy people with super light appetites, we’re not! Here’s what I served alongside that:

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And damn, people, that cheese from Georgia is really, really good. On the upper left was this creamy white cheese that tasted like a combination of cream cheese and ricotta; it was tangy but also somewhat light. I served it again a few days later drizzled with olive oil and sprinkled with herbs de Provence. People gobbled it up.

The other cheeses, the blue in the center and the cow’s milk on the right, had really mellow, clean flavors. They didn’t hit you over the head but they made you pause and appreciate the provenance of the milk that made the cheese. This was good stuff from good cows.

A few days later, I used their Pimento cheese to make My Best Grilled Cheese:

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This, too, had surprisingly clean flavors. There wasn’t too much tang, though there was nice smokiness from smoked paprika.

All in all, I was impressed with this cheese from Georgia and would gladly eat it again. In fact, we haven’t gone through it all yet so we’ll be eating it for a few weeks more. Thanks, Mat, for sending it my way…hope you get some new customers out of this post.

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