Okay, I made that up. Nobody really calls Gorgonzola Dolce “the kissing cheese,” but they should because it’s mild and it goes with bubbly. Perfect for New Years. Lord knows you don’t want Stilton breath or Roquefort breath, unless your partner is a salty dog…in which case, rock and roll.
Gorgonzola Dolce is sumptuous. The texture is as smooth as frosting, and the taste is as mellow as wedding cake. While many blues have flavor profiles that look like a cardiogram, GD is one-note. That’s right: one note, and that note is Mmmmm.
What GD lacks in complexity, it makes up for in versatility. You can spread it on bread and top it with preserves, swirl a nub into pumpkin soup or cream sauce, or serve it naked with fresh figs and honeycomb. A shake of black pepper livens it up.
Because GD is such a classic, it’s fun to eat it alongside other iconic cheeses – like Mozzarella and Parmesan. I like to create cheese boards that showcase a particular country or region. On New Years Day, for example, I’m planning to serve up a classic Italian cheese board after Philadelphia’s Mummer’s Parade.
Lots of great Italian cheese comes from Northern Italy, where Gorgonzola is made. So, why not put together a cheese plate that showcases the terroir, or “regional flavor,” of Lombardy and Piedmont? Pick a big Italian red wine, stock up on some prosciutto, and set out a few cheeses – remember to serve them at room temperature so the flavors really stand out.
Northern Italian Cheese Board
A mix of sensuous selections from Piedmont and Lombardy, this combination would make a great New Year’s cheese plate, after dinner or as an afternoon snack.
- Fontina Val d’Aosta (firm, nutty)
- Taleggio (a sublime washed rind)
- Gogonzola Dolce (creamy, blue)
- Mascarpone (ultra rich, spreadable)
- Prosciutto di Parma
- Baguette rounds
- Figs, grapes, and nuts
For more terroir, visit Madame Fromage