I met the good people from Beehive Cheese Company at The American Cheesemaker Competition where I was teaching my Artisanal Cheese & Wine Pairing Adventure class. I cruised the new cheeses and saw a cheese named Barely Buzzed. This was an impressive round of cheese with a dramatic dark brown rind. Then I tasted it and realized this rind was made of coffee and lavender buds that are rubbed on the cheese for aging. I just had to try Barely Buzzed with the Frescobaldi Castiglioni Chianti DOCG.
What a pairing! This American Original cheese is made in Utah from fresh cow?s milk and aged on Utah Blue Spruce planks. Barely Buzzed has full bodied, nutty flavor with a smooth and creamy texture. It's not like any cheese that?s every entered my mouth. With the Castiglioni Chianti DOCG, the low acidity of the carefully chosen coffee (the cheesemaker's brother is an artisanal coffee roaster) with the crisp acidity of the wine delivers a perfectly balanced flavor over and over. And both have a luscious finish that will last as you are oohing and ahhing about the flavors and they roll around your mouth. The blending of the Tuscan Sangiovese and Merlot grapes from the Castiglioni Chianti will make The Cheese Highway need another lane.