We haven’t written about many Irish cheeses over the years here at CheeseandChampagne — just two, by my count. Clearly, a stop in Ireland is in order just as soon as we embark on our grand tour of European cheese heritage. (Sponsors gladly accepted.) In the meantime, here’s a trio I was able to get my hands on here in the US. Well, technically one is American…. but it fits on this Irish cheeseboard. I’ve got a fourth suggestion should you wish to keep it all Irish, just read on.
1. St. Killian — Carrigbyrne Farmhouse, Ireland
This hexagonal-shaped, Camembert-style bloomy-rind is made by hand with cows milk. Carrigbyrne Farmhouse Cheese Co. makes cheese on a family farm on the outskirts of the village of Adamstown in southeastern Ireland. St. Killian offers a faint mushroomy flavor and is a great starting point on an Irish cheeseboard.
2. Corleggy — Corleggy Cheeses, Ireland
Corleggy is an aged, raw goats-milk cheese made in County Cavan, north Ireland. The Corleggy goats graze on lush hills, the grasses and herbs of which impart a bright, herbaceous flavor to the paste of the cheese. The small wheels are brined in salt water, lending added tang to the rind.
3. Landaff — Landaff Creamery, New Hampshire
Okay, so this cheese is a bit of an interloper. Made in the style of a Welsh Caerphilly, Landaff is a cows-milk tomme made in New Hampshire and aged at the Cellars at Jasper Hill in Vermont. But it provides an interesting counterpoint to the Irish cheeses, here, buttery yet earthy but more mellow than a farmhouse cheddar.
4. Cashel Blue — Cashel Blue, Ireland (not pictured)
If you’d prefer to keep your cheeseboard all-Irish, the curd kids heartily endorse Cashel Blue — made in Tipperary, south Ireland, since 1984. A butter-yellow, creamy paste adds balance to the tangy blue veins and salty rind.
Start the pairings with an Irish ale — Conway’s Irish Ale from Great Lakes Brewing Co. if you want to riff further on the both-sides-of-the-pond theme — before pouring a stout (say, Guinness) for the Cashel Blue.
If you’ve enjoyed an Irish cheese on your cheeseboard lately, tell us about it!