Producer: Beehive Cheese Co.
Location: Uintah, UT
Milk: Pasteurized Cow
BeeHive Cheese Company began in 2005 when brothers-in-law Pat Ford and Tim Welsh left corporate America to pursue a simpler way of life as artisan cheesemakers. To this day they are currently still one of only a handful of artisan cheesemakers in Utah.
TeaHive is one of the newest in their portfolio and has been garnering some serious attention in the cheese world. Beehive Cheese Company is already well known for Barely Buzzed and SeaHive-both of which took home awards last year in Montreal at the American Cheese Society's annual conference.
TeaHive starts as a cheddar-inspired cheese made with pasteurized milk and is rubbed with a blend of black tea and pure bergamot oil. The aromas that TeaHive provides are ones of cream balanced with the scent of orange blossoms in spring. I love to eat this cheese with a nice glass of Alsatian Pinot Gris or Riesling. If you're feeling adventurous, the cheesemaker recommends TeaHive with a pint of chocolatey stout. And for the truly unique pairing, continue reading.
Producer: Domaine des Cedres
Bottle: Cotes Du Rhone
Region: Southern Rhone(St. Nazaire), France
Grapes: Grenache, Syrah, Carignan, Cinsault
We're very excited to have this bottle open in stores this week. The hot weather hasn't exactly fixed our gaze on reds, but its duration has certainly made us miss them. Domaine des Cedres encompasses all of the things that get us excited about a wine. Quite simply, it is pleasant to drink and speaks honestly as to where it comes from. No glossy, made-up berry bomb here. Instead, it's medium bodied with spicy fruit and lingering hint of black pepper. This balanced and honest wine craves food, too. Pizza or burgers and this bottle exemplify the notion that wine has a place in our lives everyday. Satiating a more involved interest in wine, Cedres is also biodynamically farmed, uses indigenous yeast, isn't filtered and employs very minimal sulphites.
This pairing represents a perfect opportunity for you picnic folks. A pleasing, firm easily portable cheese and unique, but approachable red that highlights greatly the criteria by which Pastoral selects our wines.
Guest Monger: Bobby
This is a lively pairing with a lot of character. First impression of the wine is that this is not Bordeaux or Burgundy. There is nothing tame or subtle about its flavor. Notes of smoked plum and black earth come to mind. Yet tasting this wine last Thursday I got really ripe fruit (figs, wild berries) and baking spice (most notably, cinnamon). This only confirms what most people know to be true about Rhone wines. While they may lack the elegance of Bordeaux or Burgundy, their flavors will shock you in their boldness. These are the unruliest of all french wines. That said, this serves as a nice contrast to the cheese whose earl grey encrusted exterior strikes of refinement, colonialism, and high tea in mid-19th century England. The unmistakable floral scent of Sicilian bergamot gives finesse and adds mild bitterness to the wine. The coarsely ground black tea adds a malty flavor (think toast and warm vanilla) and provides a certain tannic structure that the wine was lacking. Finally, the paste of the cheese itself (a product of rich jersey milk from the mudflats of Utah's Great Salt Lake) adds depth and creaminess to the pairing, enhancing the ripe fruit quality in the wine while restraining the fragrant bergamot oil.