Anthony Gismondi on Wine
Thursday, September 19 2019

Noord Holand

By: Allison Spurrell
Not your garden variety Gouda

Introducing Noord Holand, bearing little resemblance to a garden variety Gouda.

It is worth a closer look.

Cheese Name: Noord Holand

Origin: Netherlands

Milk Type: Cow’s milk from herds of Holstein Friesians raised in the North of Holland

Style: Aged Farmstead Gouda

Description: Typical of the style, this four-year-old Gouda is very brittle in texture. The distinctive crunchy crystals formed from ageing are visible throughout the cheese. The paste is a vibrant amber colour, getting darker close to the rind. These twelve-kilo wheels are larger than typical Gouda made for export, and are waxed for ageing. After four years the wheels are extremely hard, and quite a challenge for even the strongest cheesemongers in the land to cut!

Tasting Notes: The ageing is the key to what makes this Gouda special. As the wheels age, they take on an amazingly sweet, rich taste. The paste is so dense and the finish so much like salty caramel, making it the perfect cheese candy for grown-ups.

There are other makers of two-to-four years old Gouda that are also notable, including Rembrandt, Beemster, and Old Amsterdam. Different house styles and different maturing time will vary the finished product, but that captivating butterscotch finish will be evident in all of them.

Pairing: I would typically pair this with a slightly salty accompaniment. Contrast is the key here so that you don’t distract from the cheese’s fudgy goodness. A few toasted walnuts or subtle savoury mustard would be a good pick.

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Written By: Allison Spurrell
Allison Spurrell
Allison Spurrell

les amis du FROMAGE is a family owned and operated specialty cheese store with two locations in Vancouver. With a carefully curated selection of local and imported cheeses, charcuterie and accompaniments, they also specialize in frozen soups and meals, all made in house using top quality ingredients. Founded in 1985 by the mother and daughter team of Alice and Allison Spurrell, les amis du FROMAGE is proud to still remain a family owned and operated Vancouver company after over 30 years in business. Current owners Allison Spurrell and Joe Chaput have come a long way since the original shoe-box sized store opened in Vancouver’s Point Grey neighborhood. You can rest assured that their mission is to continue the company’s reputation of offering the highest quality cheeses, cut to order, along with one-to-one customer service. Vancouver - 1752 West 2nd Avenue, BC V6J H6 Tel (604) 732-4218; Strathcona 843 East Hastings Street.V6A 1R8 Tel 604-253-4218. www.buycheese.com.