The Best Cheese


Last month I went to the English Festival at Hankyu Department Store.  Every year I go there to stock up on scones, clotted cream, and jam.  Even though I arrived there as soon as it opened, a long line had already formed so I was forced to wait close to one hour for my coveted scones.  By the time I'd finished with that booth, I had racked up quite a bill, most likely because the clotted cream was an outrageous price.  I just wanted to escape the noisy, crowded area, but on my way out, I was accosted by 'the cheese lady'.  

I had nearly reached the exit when a very friendly lady suddenly popped up in front of me bearing cheese samples.  How could I say no?  I love cheese!  I don't think that I could go one week without eating cheese.  Before I tried the sample, she gave me quite a detailed history of where the cheese had come from, how long it had been fermented, how many awards it had won, etc.  She mentioned twice that it was their best-selling cheddar cheese, so I was expecting the texture to be dry and firm.  However, that particular cheddar cheese was like none that I had ever tasted before.  It was crumbly but the texture was creamy and the flavor quite distinct.  Usually I like to eat my cheese with baguettes or some form of sourdough bread, but I think that it would be a waste to dilute the flavor of this cheddar cheese with any type of bread.  It's best savored alone with a nice wine, or beer if you prefer to keep it casual.  The bread can be kept on the side and overloaded with butter, which also works very well.

For anyone who is interested, the name of the cheddar cheese is Black Bomber made by the company Snowdonia.  It comes encased in a thick, round shield of black wax and is produced in Wales.  There are several other unique flavors of cheese to choose from, including cranberry - which is nice - but the Black Bomber is definitely the best!

~ Samantha