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Bay Blue

Producer
Point Reyes Farmstead Cheese Co
Country
United States
Region
California
Size
6 ins diameter, 3-4 ins high
Weight
6 lbs
Website
pointreyescheese.com
Milk
Cow
Classification
Firm
Rennet
Animal
Rind
Natural
Style
Blue

As farmers and ranchers, the Giacomini family have had a presence in Point Reyes for many decades. A descendant of Italian mountain dairy producers, Bob Giacomini began milking cows on his Point Reyes dairy in 1959.

The dairy is near Point Reyes Station, just an hour north of San Francisco on America‚Äôs west coast.  It is a stunningly beautiful location with a temperate climate, influenced by the salty air that comes straight off the Point Reyes National Seashore and the Pacific ocean

Over the years, Bob and his wife Dean, together with their four daughters, Karen, Diana, Lynn and Jill, developed a shared vision of producing an all-natural farmstead cheese. This dream was realized in August, 2000, when they founded Point Reyes Farmstead Cheese Company and produced the first vat of their first cheese, Original Blue.

Milk for production of all the Giacomini's cheeses comes from their own closed herd of Holstein cows that graze the pastures overlooking Tomales Bay.

Production for Bay Blue begins at 3:30am when milk is pumped to the cheese room in time for the morning's cheesemaking. There, it is pasteurized and after the wheels are formed, cheeses are allowed to sit in their molds overnight.

The following day, after unmolding, cheeses are hand-salted over a three day period before being pierced on the fourth day. They are then taken to the curing room for about three weeks where they are cradled in a vertical position on racks, each wheel being rotated a quarter turn each day.  This ensures that the butterfat is evenly distributed throughout the cheese.

In the early stages of their three month maturation, each wheel is pierced with stainless steel needles.  This allows the air into the cheese, where it reacts with the enzymes and bacteria and causes the development of the blue veining. 

Tasting Notes

A naturally rinded cheese, Bay Blue was created with Stilton in mind. The interior texture is fudgy and slightly crumbly, punctuated with blue-green veining throughout the paste.

Flavors and aromas of of earth and mushrooms combine with a gentle hint of salty caramel, reflecting the coastal environment where the cheese is made.

Pairings

Bay Blue is perfect for pairing with a glass of vintage Port or barrel-aged Scotch. In the kitchen, Bay Blue is a great topper for a succulent steak or burger, shaved onto poached pears or grilled peaches or melted into mushroom risotto.

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