Welcome to the world of Harbison Cheese, a heavenly delight straight from the verdant pastures of Jasper Hill Farm. This remarkable cheese is not just a food item, but a sensory experience that engages your palate in an unforgettable journey.
Named after Anne Harbison, the “grandmother of Greensboro”, it encapsulates the essence of its birthplace in Vermont. With a creamy, spoonable texture and a woodsy, sweet, and complex flavor profile, Harbison Cheese is truly a testament to the artisan craftsmanship at Jasper Hill Farm.
Quick Facts About Harbison Cheese
|Origin||Jasper Hill Farm, Vermont, USA.|
|Milk Type||Cow’s milk, specifically from Ayrshire cows.|
|Cheese Type||Soft-ripened and bloomy-rind cheese.|
|Texture||Creamy and spoonable when fully ripe.|
|Rind||Edible, wrapped in spruce bark for unique flavor.|
|Flavor Profile||Sweet, lemony with hints of mustard, vegetal notes, and woodsy, mushroom undertones.|
|Aging Time||9 to 13 weeks.|
|Pairings||Perfect with fermented sour beers, oaked Chardonnay, or any off-dry cider. Pairs well with crusty bread and charcuterie.|
|Awards||Winner of the “Best American Cheese” at the World Cheese Awards in 2018.|
|Shelf-Life||About 4 to 5 weeks, if properly stored.|
What is Harbison Cheese?
Harbison Cheese is a gastronomic gem hailing from the heart of Greensboro, Vermont, meticulously crafted by the master cheesemakers at Jasper Hill Farm. This unique cheese is renowned for its soft-ripened nature, a characteristic that allows it to ripen from the outside in, gradually enhancing its complex flavor profile.
What truly sets Harbison apart is its distinctive rind. The rustic, bloomy rind exudes a woodsy sweetness, perfectly balanced with notes of lemon, mustard, and vegetal flavors. This cheese’s allure doesn’t stop at its rind. Unveil its spruce bark wrapping, and you’ll discover a creamy, spoonable paste that’s nothing short of decadent.
Harbison’s journey from pasteurized cow’s milk to a gooey, floral, and piney delight is a testament to Jasper Hill Farm’s commitment to artisanal cheese-making. Wrapped in strips of spruce cambium harvested from the farm’s woodlands, Harbison embodies the very essence of its birthplace.
The flavor evolution of Harbison is a sensory journey in itself. Its youth is characterized by buttery, unctuous tones with mild earthy and sweet cream nuances. But as it matures, the sweetness gradually makes way for more woodsy, robust undertones, offering an entirely new flavor experience. Whether you’re a seasoned cheese connoisseur or a curious foodie, Harbison Cheese promises a tasteful adventure that’s bound to captivate your palate.
What Does Harbison Cheese Taste Like?
Harbison Cheese boasts a taste reminiscent of buttered popcorn, characterized by a slightly nutty, sweet, aromatic, and toasty profile. The cheese’s texture is pudding-like, gently funky, and woodsy, contributing to its earthy and vegetal notes. These are beautifully balanced by a creamy sweetness, possibly with a hint of a funky aftertaste.
As the cheese ripens, it may develop a more pungent aroma, typical for this type of cheese. Lovers of strong Brie, Camembert, or Fromage d’Affinois will appreciate Harbison’s similar qualities, but with more depth.
Its softness can transform into a wonderful gooey texture if left to mature. The taste of Harbison is a delightful combination of woodsy and creamy, slightly sweet yet rich, with subtle hints of citrus and mustard. This cheese truly offers a unique and enjoyable culinary experience.
Harbison Cheese Tasting Notes
- Woodsy Flavor: Harbison cheese has a woodsy flavor profile that comes from its spruce bark wrapping.
- Buttery Undertones: The cheese exhibits rich, buttery undertones that give it depth and mimic the taste of popcorn.
- Soft and Creamy: It has a soft, creamy texture that grows more spoonable as it matures.
- Complex Taste: Harbison cheese offers a complex taste marked by hints of citrus and mustard.
- Pungent Aroma: As it ages, the cheese develops a pungent aroma typical of bloomy-rind cheeses.
- Ripening Transformation: When left to ripen, Harbison transforms from soft to a gooey consistency, adding another dimension to its taste experience.
10 Cheeses that are Similar to Harbison
|Cheese Name||Origin||Texture||Flavor Profile|
|Brie de Meaux||France||Soft, Creamy||Mild, Fruity, Earthy|
|Camembert||France||Soft, Creamy||Earthy, Mushroom-like, Slightly Sweet|
|Epoisses||France||Soft, Creamy||Strong, Pungent, Salty, Spicy|
|Taleggio||Italy||Semi-soft, Creamy||Fruity, Meaty, Nutty|
|Robiola Bosina||Italy||Soft, Creamy||Mild, Tangy, Slightly Sweet|
|Coulommiers||France||Soft, Creamy||Buttery, Nutty, Earthy|
|Delice de Bourgogne||France||Soft, Creamy||Rich, Buttery, Slightly Tart|
|Saint Andre||France||Soft, Creamy||Buttery, Tangy, Slightly Salty|
|Champignon Mushroom||Germany||Soft, Creamy||Earthy, Mushroom-like, Slightly Tangy|
|Mt Tam||USA||Soft, Creamy||Buttery, Earthy, Mildly Tangy|
What Pairs Well With Harbison Cheese?
|Bread/Crackers||Baguette, Artisanal Crackers, Sourdough Bread|
|Fruit||Fresh Apples, Pears, Grapes, Fig Jam|
|Meats||Prosciutto, Salami, Smoked Salmon|
|Wine/Beer||Fuller-bodied White Wines like Chardonnay, Light Red Wines like Pinot Noir, Craft Beers, especially those with a fruity or slightly bitter profile|
|Condiments||Honey, Mustard, Pickled Vegetables|
|Nuts||Almonds, Walnuts, Pecans|
|Other Cheeses||Sharp Cheddar, Blue Cheese, Aged Gouda|
Also read: 11 Best Crackers that Pair Well with Cheese
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