Green’s Raw Milk Cheddar (Glastonbury, England) is a gorgeous cheese — full flavored, rich, creamy, mouth-coating, but not particularly sharp or pungent. I picked up a 1/3-pound wedge at my local market for just under $8 and thought it was well worth the price. With it, just a simple pairing of maple-glazed pecan halves. No bread or crackers to interfere with the smooth, slightly nutty texture of the cheese. The pecans added just the right amount of crunch and mellow sweetness.
To go with, I chose the Casa Nuestra 2006 Cabernet Franc Napa Valley ($38). So pretty, with bright blackberry, blueberry and currant aromas and flavors laced with smooth chocolate, spices and a touch of mint. Long, lush finish. Just a baby now — benefits from decanting in the short run. Should age beautifully for the next five or six years at least. Locate this wine online or in your area.
Don’t worry if you cannot find these exact items at home — see what kind of raw milk cheddar (or Gouda, for that matter) you can get locally, and pair it with a California Cabernet Franc or maybe a GSM blend (Grenache-Syrah-Mourvedre) from Australia that comes in under 15% alcohol. Enjoy!
(To make the pecans, simply stir together a cup of pecans with about 3 tablespoons maple syrup. Then spread on a baking sheet and bake at 375F for about 5 minutes, stirring once. Allow to cool and crisp on the pan before using or storing.)