Gouda

Gouda (how-da)

Gouda (the Dutch pronounce it how-da) is a cow?s milk cheese that can dance with many wines. At first it might seem disconnected to enjoy a Dutch cheese with Italian wines. On the contrary, this is a special pairing and has the convenience of being a cheese that is readily available in your local grocery store.

Gouda was first made in Holland in a town by the same name just a short distance from Amsterdam. Cheese markets there have been selling this cheese since the Middle Ages.

Gouda?s age determines if it is in the semi-soft category or the hard category and the flavors do change dramatically with age. Have your guests throw some Nipozzano Chianti R?fina Riserva DOCG down The Cheese Highway? with Gouda and all will be smiling.

Semi-soft Gouda has a beautiful yellow paste and is usually coated in wax to stop it from getting dried out. The mild, nutty and creamy Gouda is a dreamy contrast to this Chianti?s plum and blackcurrant flavor that?s enhanced with cinnamon and clove spice. Relax and use your Snozz...then concentrate on ?seeing? these intricacies.

Gouda is made all over the planet. Holland is the Motherland but now even countries like Brazil and Australia are making this much-loved cheese. The American Artisanal Goudas are remarkable and their flavors reflect the unique terroir of each area of our county.

Gouda not only comes from all over the globe, it also is made in many flavors. One I love that at first sounds scary is Gouda with Stinging Nettles. I got turned on to stinging nettles by Iron Chef Winner and owner of Los Angeles restaurants Grace and BLD, Chef Neal Fraser. Stinging nettles often grow wild by streams and are reputed to have special medicinal properties. Smoked Gouda is also a terrific form of this cheese. Specialty Goudas can be made with the curd combined with garlic, caraway, cumin, cracked pepper and a huge amount of additional choices.

Okay, you?ve enjoyed a selection of Gouda with your Nipozzano and you?ve got some wine left over. What about having the rest of your wine with Aged Gouda? Aged Gouda?s quite hard in texture (watch out for your fingers when cutting it) and has a pronounced caramel flavor profile that?s dynamite with the wine at the end of your party. It will be a surprise for your friends and create a finale to your evening filled with happy memories. Enjoy!