At Oliver’s Market, we love cheese.
Like. We really love cheese.
So, when asked to pick our favorite cheese out of hundreds, that’s no easy feat! I mean, how exactly are we supposed to look at all of these beautiful cheeses and pick just one?! We understand just how overwhelming it can be to try and select the perfect gourmet cheese for your tastes, especially if you’re just dipping your toes in the, well… cheese.
But that’s exactly why our cheese-mongers are so good at what they do! By asking a few simple questions, our skilled and knowledgeable staff can get to the heart of which cheese will suit you exactly. We are here to help you navigate the cheese counter and find the perfect cheese to fit into your meal. Will it be enjoyed before dinner or after, or will it be featured in the main course? What do you like to drink – beer or cider, red wine or white? Champagne? The list goes on and on! These are just a sample of the questions we use to help us find your perfect cheese. With so many wonderful choices to be had, our mongers are eager to connect you with that one, special cheese that will really speak to your soul (and stomach). Whether it’s connecting you to the verdant, Sonoma County landscape through one of our incredible local artisan cheeses or bridging cheesemaking history with a European classic, every cheese has a story to tell and an enriching experience for you to share.
This week, we asked our mongers pick some of their personal favorites, and they did not disappoint! Stop by and get lost in the cheese sauce!
Madame de Fromage, Cowgirl Creamery “Red Hawk”
As a passionate advocate of local artisan cheese for two decades, it is no surprise Colette would choose a California original. A washed rind cheese that only flourishes in the original Tomales Creamery, Red Hawk is reminiscent of a French Epoisses with robust beefy flavors, yet the addition of tangy Creme fraiche flawlessly blends old world and new, much like Colette herself.
Gourmet Cheese Coordinator, Jasper Hill Farms “Harbison”
A spruce banded beauty, this little bloomy disk contains the most divine cheese best described as pudding-like. Scoop with a spoon directly onto a crusty baguette, no knife required. Tucking into a wheel of Harbison is like getting a big bear hug from your bestie. An added bonus, Jasper Hill are a responsible company with great respect for the land, animals, and community of Vermont.
Windsor Cheese Department Manager, “Secret de Compostelle”
The cheese that I most often reach for is Le Secret de Compostelle. A semi-firm sheep’s milk cheese from the French Pyrenees, it has buttery overtones with nutty complexities. I enjoy it sliced thin with a Honey Crisp apple as a night-time dessert.
Devorah “Dee” Harris
Stony Point Cheese Department Manager, WM Cofield “Big McKinley” Cheddar
I love this local cheddar for its rich buttery texture as well as its deep yellow hue from the Jersey cows that graze on the green, organic pastures of Petaluma. The old-world cheesemaking methods applied to make this British style clothbound cheddar connects us with our history and future.
Montecito Cheese Department Manager, Rodolphe le Meunier “Adarre”
A sheep and goat blend from the Basque region, Adarre is everything I am looking for in a cheese. From the nutty aroma and creamy texture with scattered crystals, to the evolution of flavors on the palate, this is a perfect cheese. Time and again, when I hand out a sample, people are blown away by this cheese.
Cotati Cheese Department Manager, Pennyroyal Farms Laychee
($8.99/ea, 6 oz. Container)
Simple and elegant, perfect in the kitchen or on a sweet baguette versatile by nature and a perfect companion to a multitude of accompaniments. I am always in the mood for a fresh, citrusy, tangy chevre, and it never disappoints.