The world loves cheese which comes in a variety of taste, texture, form and even color. While everyday cheese is not very expensive, the better varieties command premium prices. Cheese is made from concentrated milk of cow, buffalo, sheep, goat or donkey, but does not have a viscous or liquid state. The manner of processing and maturing of cheese lends to it the distinct look and a unique taste, enabling you to tell one taste from the other. Any Mediterranean dining table is incomplete without its cheese, and of course bread.
Listed below are some of the most sought after cheese that also happen to be the most expensive.
Country of Origin: Serbia
Cost: $600 per pound
Topping the list is Pule, a precious and rare cheese, handmade by just one farm in Serbia that manually draws its milk from 140 donkeys. Each donkey is hand-milked and the milk drawn is known to contain less fat and is rich in protein and vitamin. The milk has anti-allergen properties that improve immunity in humans. The cheese made out of this milk is then smoked to add to its unique flavor that makes it superior to the other varities.
– 25 litres of donkey milk produces 1 kg Pule cheese
– 1 litre costs around $45
– Only one farm in Serbia with 140 donkeys producing milk
– Each donkey is milked 3 times a day
– Low in fat; rich in protein and vitamin; increases immunity
Country of Origin: Sweden
Cost: $500 per pound
Moose milk, although higher in fat content than cow milk, is actually rich in minerals. The Elk Farm in Sweden has some of the finest domesticated moose from which milk is hand collected in limited quantity. This milk is then converted to fine cheese which never exceeds 600 pounds in a year. The texture, flavor and limited production make Moose rank amongst the most sought-after cheese in the world.
- Types of Moose – Rind, Blue and Feta
White Stilton Gold:
Country of Origin: United Kingdom
Cost: $450 per pound
White Stilton Gold is seen mostly around Christmas when the demand is at its peak. The white version of this cheese is mostly bland in taste and is usually combined with fruits to make more popular varieties of dessert cheese. Its characteristic white look is enriched with real gold leaf to add flavour.
Another popular version of this rare cheese is the Blue Stilton variety, visually differentiated by its fungus-laden blue veins that give it the distinct pungent smell and rich flavor. Both cheese take around 12 weeks to mature, but its limited quantity and rich appeal give it the premium position amongst global cheese varieties.
- Varieties – White Stilton Gold; Blue Stilton
Country of Origin: USA
Cost: $200 per pound
This is America’s answer to the world of premium cheese. Only 450 pounds of it is made in a year at a farm in Wisconsin that is owned by Tony and Julie Hook. The cheddar they produce is usually 1-5 years old. The time period for which it is set aside leads to the development of rich, complex flavors. The Hook’s took the market by rage when they released the 15-year old Cheddar few years back. Soon, they would be launching cheddar that has been maturing for 20 years. This cheese is expected to be crunchy and crumbly as with time cheese develops calcium lactate crystals. Only quarter pound of this variety would be sold to an individual. They specialize in a variety of cow milk cheese, sheep milk cheese, and goat milk cheese. The Triple Play makes use of all the 3 kinds of milk.
Country of Origin: Italy
Cost: $150 per pound
This Italian cheese takes around 15 to 20 years to mature and is made from a blend of cow and goat milk. Select breed of cows graze around in the summer months in the Valtellina Valley, feeding on rich alpine meadows. The fruity tasting cheese is in huge demand, especially in the Mediterranean area.
Country of Origin: Italy
Cost: $45 per pound
The tear-drop shaped cheese from Italy has a distinct look, taste and color that places it amongst the more sought after cheese but is not exorbitant in price.
Popular cheese and wine matching
- Cheese with high acidity: sweet wine
- Soft goat cheese: dry fresh red wines
- Salted cheese: wine with good acidity
- Smooth fatty cheese: smooth oily wine
- White rind cheese: dry champagne
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