The Long Suffering Husband brought home these two identical-looking cheeses, one called “Fawn” and one called “Stag.” They are cheddars made by Wisconsin artisanal producer Deer Creek.
The Fawn is creamy, buttery, tangy and interestingly sweet. It has won a raft of awards including a silver medal at the 2012 World Cheese Awards. The WCA, it appears, is the Olympics of cheese. One wonders if they have any strange outlier entries like the Jamaican bobsled team (cheese from Singapore?). Or special crowd-pleasing categories like Beach Volleyball (the “cheesecake” event).
According to Deer Creek, the Fawn “is made of milk from an area of our state where the glacial lobes of the last Ice Age converged and then receded, creating the distinctive terroir of this region of the state.” So milk has a terroir like wine? I always thought that the “terroir” of milk came from what the cows eat, but I suppose that in turn must be affected by the soil.
The Stag is, as you may have guessed, a more aged version of “select vats” from the Fawn. Also an award-winner, “it is rugged, driving strong toffee and butterscotch notes, yet possesses the sweet finish of The Fawn. As it ages, The Stag develops a hint of crystalline crunch to further enliven the taste buds with rich texture as well as flavor.” On my tasting, this was all true, except that it was far less sweet than the Fawn, a plus in my book. I am fond of those little crystals that develop in a well-aged cheddar or gouda.
Both are well worth a taste if you happen to have access to Wisconsin cheese.
The stag wheel cover is amazing. Your descriptions make me hungry.
Since you mentioned the World Cheese Awards, the contest which has taken place for several years in the city in which I live, I thought you’d enjoy a link to a site listing the recent winners: http://www.worldchampioncheese.org/
I had no idea the awards took place there! It makes me happy, to think of all that amazing cheese (and the people who make it) in one place. Particularly a place I know well 🙂
Reticent Mental Property said:
I like the little crystals, too….try Sartori Montmarte. YUM.
Thanks for the suggestion! I’ll look for it!
I would buy that cheese for the cover alone! Love the flowery tasting notes. These cheeses sound super. I love aged cheesy crystally bits too, yummy. (I am smiling my ‘pondering cheese smile and thinking it is delicious’ smile.)
Yes, I would like to buy that big wheel of cheese too. Except that it’s a couple of hundred dollars.
Ha, we shall just look at the big wheel of cheese then…
Mmmm, sounds good. Terroir is a big thing in cheese. Someone once described cows as ‘big walking bunches of grapes’!
I had no idea, but it makes sense that with experience, one could distinguish terroir in cheese. But only if the cows are grass fed.
Daisy Deer said:
Hi, Linnet! It’s Daisy Deer, Cheese Aficionado for the award winning Deer Creek Specialty & World Cheeses. Soooooo glad to hear that you loved The Fawn and The Stag. They are two of my favorites. How sweet of your husband to bring them home for you!
Thank you for the shout out about our cheeses and their recognitions. Taking home primo awards is no easy feat, so we’re proud of our little dearies! Visit our Facebook page https://www.facebook.com/deercreekspecialtycheese for an inside glimpse of all that is going on at Deer Creek.
Thanks Daisy! We just replenished our supply of both 🙂