Raw Sheep - Finca Sierra la Solana/Essex St. Cheese Co. - La Mancha, Spain
Named to commemorate the year in which Don Quixote was written, Manchego 1605 is truly unique. This cheese is hand-selected for importation by the Essex St. Cheese Company. The folks at Essex focus mainly on flavor profile instead of a specific aging time. In this case, the criteria is sweetness and balance, avoiding the overly salted qualities of many manchegos. The waxless rind helps the cheese to breathe, resulting in a clean, sweet aroma of hay and almonds. Flavors are rustic and sheepy to start, giving way to a pleasant, milky sweetness with hints of warm spice.