Cheese Is The New Wine

Cheese is the new wine: UnieKaas Reserve Gouda

Ever since my birthday, I’ve been thinking about doing a series on the various cheeses I buy both from Murray’s and elsewhere. Here’s the first, a piece of UnieKaas Reserve Gouda:

The Whole Foods in Union Square has a basket of shrink-wrapped pieces of cheese too small to sell otherwise. I tend to take pity on these cheese runt-orphans and always come home with at least one.

I really had some misgivings about this one. It looks like a piece of Gouda that you bought and then abandoned to back of the fridge and it went all skanky and dry. It is dry, but it’s not flaky bone-dry, like a Parmesan — it’s more like the texture of a dark chocolate and it shaves off into curls when sliced.

Eaten its own, it’s smooth tasting with little crystallized crunches of salt, and when crumbled into a soup (tomato barley in this case), the cheese mellowed a bit but didn’t vanish altogether into the soup either. There’s a really nice umami-ness to this cheese, too, that’s sort of… well, sausagey. I can think of no other way to describe it, other than sausage-like.

Ingredients: Pasteurized cow’s milk, salt, cheese culture, animal rennet
Country of origin: Holland
Aged: At least 18 months.
Price: $15.99/lb
Final verdict: Buy it.

(Is there something else I should include here? Let me know.)


  • Beth

    Aw, misfit cheese! (I just watched “Rudolph” a couple nights ago.)

    I’m at my desk, jotting down a little list of things to pick up at the store, and when I clicked over to this post from Twitter, I grabbed my pencil and added this to my list: “CHEESE”. All caps. Nothing else on the list is in all caps. But oh, the thought of a lovely hunk of cheese. And some wine. On a Friday. Heaven.

  • Jen

    I’ve gotten this brand of aged Gouda before and agree with you – it’s delicious! It reminds me of the “oude kaas” (literally: old cheese) that you can get from the cheese vendor at the outdoor market in Holland. I’ll have to look for some leftovers next time I’m at Whole Foods!

  • Matthew

    I got some of this from a Holland Festival booth at Bowling Green in New York City yesterday. When I tried some today, I thought the crunchy bits meant it had spoiled! Thank goodness for this Web site.

  • jr

    i love the salt in this cheese.
    paid 9.99/lb at whole foods 11.2.09

    anyone find it for a better price?

    .60 of a lb didnt last long but was a tiny slice of heaven in my mouth

  • Eric Gordon

    I am a chef in a hotel in columbus ohio and this cheese hands down is the best cheese in town, and it taste great with grapes and candied pecans

  • Linda

    Love a 5 year gouda due to saltiness, but typically the texture is too hard to snack on (just shave). 3 years are not as salty and as a result lack flavor, but this Gouda is WONDERFUL and tastes like 5yr gouda but is soft. AMAZINGLY good.

  • jamie

    i want to marry this cheese. i have eaten it with apples, nectarines, crackers, all by itself. to me, it tastes sweet and salty, with a little caramel to it.

  • Raymond Phillips

    I just tried and bought some of this delicious uniekaas reserve cheese from our local Whole Foods store in Ann Arbor, Michigan. I have long held that I do not believe there is a cheese out there that I do not like and this one, again, confirms this.