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.