Appenzeller Cheese, The King of Switzerland
Appenzeller Extra king of Switzerland
I recently had the opportunity to work with Appenzeller “extra” cheese at a food exhibition, for three days I presented the cheese to hundreds of exhibition visitors.
For many Appenzeller needed no introduction a very well-known and respected cheese with an established brand that has over the years built a regular customer stream to cheese counters throughout the land.
There were also many new gourmands who tried it for the first time, most first timers liked it and for some it didn’t match their palate or expectations.
Don’t be put off by the label claiming that Appenzeller extra is spicy, würtzig or picante, the washed rind family is full of exceptional and special flavour explosions that are there for the tasting.
Appenzeller cheese has about 700 years of documented history and local tradition behind it.
Appenzeller is a hard, washed rind cheese from the Cantons of Appenzell Innerrhoden & Ausserrhoden in eastern Switzerland.
The cheese truckles are of a standard size of 6,5k-7kg, Appenzeller cheese of this size contains milk curds from 80 litres of local unpasteurised milk. The milk is traditionally delivered to the dairies by the farmers themselves, the milk is delivered in small milk cans with a regulation maximum transport limit of 20 km to the dairy. There are many smaller dairies throughout the Appenzell cantons producing Appenzeller cheese.
After moulding and shaping the cheese is dipped into a secret herbal brine containing local meadow herbs & flowers wine or cider, this process ensures the flavour and pungency that gives Appenzeller its unique and desired characteristics. Each cheese is hand washed during the maturation process thus promoting and helping preserve the cheese and the formation of the rind.
Appenzeller is sold in three varieties
Classic, aged 3-4 months (silver label)
Surchoix, aged 4-6 months (gold label)
Extra, aged 6-8 months (black label)
|Appenzeller extra is a straw-colored full flavor cheese with a concentrated creamy taste and a long after taste.|
Wine experts recommend both red and white wine as compliments but after eating it constantly for three days I feel I would rather drink white wine probably a Riesling or local Swiss white wine with it.
If I was going to serve it on a cheese board or similar I would ensure that there were fresh chilled pears serve with it.
Served within a hot dish Appenzeller should be the star make it simple, so you don’t confuse Appenzeller’s exquisite taste.