I know that I have a page on this website dedicated solely to cheese, but recently I experienced a cheese that was so incredible, possibly even life changing, that I had to dedicate a post to it. Before the holidays I was lucky enough to be invited to a class on Wisconsin cheese at the Cheese School of San Francisco, and the first cheese that was served was one nobody had heard of: the Rush Creek Reserve.
It’s produced by the Uplands Cheese Company, the same makers as Pleasant Ridge Reserve, which has one best in show for 3 years at the ACS. The Rush Creek Reserve is brand new, the only other cheese being sold by this company, and in my opinion, 500 times better than the Pleasant Ridge.
The consistency is very soft so to eat it you cut off the top of the round and essentially scoop it out with a butter knife or spoon. Most people would put it on bread or a cracker, but I like eating it right off of the spoon. Some people eat pints of ice cream as an indulgence, I like to eat spoonfuls of cheese.
The taste is smokey and bacony but not nutty or overly smoked like a smoked cheddar or gouda. It’s very savory, and although it’s a washed rind there’s no funk to it. And because it’s a raw-milk cheese (aged the minimum allowed in the US, 60 days), there’s no real sharpness – it’s just smooth. It’s actually incredibly hard to describe because I really can’t draw any comparisons to other cheeses I’ve tried before. And that’s the thing – after years and years of being obsessed with cheese, it’s truly incomparable.
Bi-Rite has gotten it in twice, and I”m not sure what other cheese shops are carrying it. It’s not cheap, $30 for a round (and you should buy it whole), and it comes in a very limited supply that sells quickly, so you have to make sure you get there soon after the shipment has arrived. And you better get there before I do, cause next time I’m stocking up.