Cheese Is The New Wine

Cheese Is The New Wine: Tickler Fabulous Extra Mature Cheddar

Tickler Fabulous Extra Mature Cheddar

So, here’s the thing about Murray’s Cheese.

First, the people behind the counter always give you their full attention. Not most of it or kind of looking at you but also kind of looking off in the distance with a bored look—their full (without being overwhelming or creepy) attention.

Then, after slicing the cheese you wanted, they very carefully wrap it up in their special cheese paper. Square, round, wedge-shaped; it doesn’t matter to these guys. It’s like cheese-paper origami.

And then, when you get it home and are about to unwrap it (with a small amount of sadness, knowing you will never ever wrap it back up again as neatly), you realize the sticker holding it all together doesn’t just say CHEDDAR $12.99/LB BEST BEFORE 10/29. It says something like: Raw cow’s milk is harvested from the lush Devon milk fields and taken to the Tickler creamery in the UK’s Taw Valley. After the 40-pound blocks have been made with traditional cultures, they are aged a full 18 months, during which an unusual depth of tangy, sweet flavor develops.

And yet, all that perfect awesomeness from Murray’s is nothing—NOTHING—compared to the total frigging awesomeness of this cheese. Yes, this cheese has reduced me to the level of a 13-year-old describing a Michael Bay movie. WHOA IT’S FRIGGING AWESOME YOU GUYS.

At its most basic level, it’s a sharp Cheddar, but it’s so much more than just sharp. Like the sticky label says, it’s genuinely tangy with a lingering sweet finish. It’s got a lovely dry, slightly crumbly texture, interspersed with little crunchy bits of crystallized salt.

Okay, it’s taken me more than an hour to write this post, simply because I can’t stop picking at this cheese as I write. Just go buy some already.

Ingredients: Raw milk, rennet, salt.
Country of origin: England.
Aged: Eighteen months.
Price: $12.99/lb. at Murray’s.