In 2016, Whole Foods came out with their list of the 12 Cheeses You Can’t Live Without, chosen by their global cheese buyer, Cathy Strange.* It’s a very impressive list!**
That year, Whole Foods held their first 12 Days of Cheese sale and they repeated it the year after.
This year, the list is as impressive as ever with 12 fabulous cheeses offered at half price – one each day. In fact, if you are an Amazon Prime member, you get an additional 10% off.
The Whole Foods 2018 List of Fabulous Cheeses From Whole Foods Newsroom
Klare Melk Truffle Gouda
“Exquisite, rich and flavorful raw milk gouda laced generously with truffles!”
Esquirrou Petit Ossau-Iraty
“Awarded the international title for best cheese at the World Championship Cheese contest (will hold this title through 2020), this French cheese features rich nutty notes.”
Kaltbach Cave Aged Le Gruyère
“Robust and deeply full-flavored with rich tones of tangy fruit and classic nuttiness make this Swiss cheese perfect for fondue, paired with apple pie, potatoes or roasted meats.”
Vermont Creamery Bijou
“French for ‘jewel,’ Bijou is the perfect name for this small, geotrichum-rinded beauty featuring light citrus fruit forward flavors with a hint of nuts on the finish.”
“This delicate, slightly salty, yet smooth and earthy cheese was selected exclusively for Whole Foods Market from one of the most respected affineurs in France.”
Neal’s Yard Dairy Keen’s Cheddar
“This protected designation of origin (PDO) recognized raw milk farm-house Cheddar comes from one of only three traditional producers remaining in the UK, boasting a dense yet creamy texture and complex flavors ranging from brothy to spicy.”
Cypress Grove Humboldt Fog
“Conceived in a dream by founder Mary Keehn, this delicious American original cheese paved the way for soft-ripened goat cheese in America.”
Uplands Cheese Company Pleasant Ridge Reserve
“Modeled on the French classic cheese Beaufort, this raw milk cheese is only produced May through October and is the only cheese to win Best in Show at the American Cheese Society three times, featuring sweetness ranging from grassy to butterscotch and fruit.”
Saxon Creamery Hika Bay
“This exclusive to Whole Foods Market Wisconsin cheese was named as one of the top 16 cheeses in the world (selected from 3,401 cheeses); carefully aged, the cheese is smooth and creamy with amazing texture.”
Rogue Creamery Organic Enraptured Blue
“Exclusive to Whole Foods Market, this decadent blue is soaked in a blend of biodynamic Merlot, Syrah and Zinfandel from the Frey Vineyards giving the cheese rich and buttery flavors with notes of currants and berries.”
Mitica Drunken Goat
“Made from the milk of Murciana goats and soaked for 3 days in Monastrell wine, both the cheese and wine are typical to this region of Spain, this mild and creamy goat cheese is well balanced and perfect for entertaining.”
Cellars at Jasper Hill Kombucha Willoughby
“Vermont classic reflects the terroir with its succulent, buttery and aromatic components. The cheese is complex from first taste with subtle undertones of buttermilk and fruit. This year’s Willoughby is washed with organic Dr. Kombucha Love produced in Oregon, adding notes of jasmine & lavender.”
Cathy has been with Whole Foods since 1990. Her official title now is “Global Executive Coordinator of Specialty and Product Innovation & Development.” Her achievements in the world of cheese are too numerous to list, but we know her best from her involvement with the American Cheese Society. She has been a judge at the ACS Cheese Competition and she was awarded the Lifetime Service Award from the ACS in 2015. (Our founder, Ricki Carroll was given the award in 2016).
This is the list she picked in 2016 with their descriptions: (from https://www.wholefoodsmarket.com/blog/12-cheeses-you-cant-live-without-bonus-theyre-sale)
Cellars at Jasper Hill Harbison
This decadent soft-ripened cheese from Vermont is hand-wrapped with spruce bark, adding a woodsy note to its earthy flavor.
Lovely match with an IPA.
A traditional French washed-rind cheese (washed with Marc de Bourgogne) with a luscious texture, bold yet balanced tangy-sweet flavor and pleasant pungency.
Excellent with a French pinot noir.
Vermont Creamery Bonne Bouche
This mild ash-ripened goat cheese with earthy notes and a subtle hazelnut flavor is a visually stunning addition to any cheese board.
Great with a glass of Rosé.
Borough Market Stilton
Rich and creamy with a complex, earthy flavor and a hint of spiciness. Made with vegetarian rennet.
Pairs perfectly with port or stout beers.
Uplands Cheese Company Pleasant Ridge Reserve
The only 3-time winner of the American Cheese Society Best of Show, this cheese has a sweet, broth-like flavor with notes of butterscotch and fruit.
The hint of sweetness calls for a riesling.
This classic washed-rind cheese is aged in the centuries-old Kaltbach caves of Switzerland. Nutty and creamy with a velvety texture.
The creaminess counterpoints nicely with a crisp white wine.
Cypress Grove Chevre Truffle Tremor
A silky, creamy soft-ripened goat cheese packed with truffles. Deep floral, herb and mushroom flavors.
An American original! Zinfandel is a perfect match here.
Rapin Le Maréchal
This creamy, raw-milk Alpine cheese is infused with flavor from herbs added during the ripening process.
Enjoy with sauvignon blanc.
This classic cave-aged sheep’s milk blue cheese shows rich spiciness, complex layers of flavor and a luscious, smooth texture.
Just the match for a rich sauterne.
A classic from Normandy produced using high quality milk from France, then aged to perfection by a third-generation affineur. Full-flavored, creamy and earthy with mushroom overtones.
Lovely with a light Red.
Vermont Creamery St. Albans
An American take on a traditional French cheese, sourced from milk from one farm. Delicate and smooth with rich creamy flavors and nutty notes. Non-GMO Project Verified.
Savor with a sauvignon blanc.
Rogue Creamery Flora Nelle
A bold blue cheese from Oregon with tropical fruit flavors and a finish of sweet cream.
Gewürztraminer complements perfectly.