Cutting the (Night) Cheese

Cutting into a clothbound cheddar is easier when it only weighs 10 or 20 pounds, as opposed to 90. This Beecher’s Handmade Cheese Flagship Reserve is a small-format clothbound cheddar-style cheese, made in Seattle.

Flagship Reserve is made with the curds leftover from making Beecher’s Flagship, so it is similar to the famous Cheddar-Gruyère blend. But the Reserve is made in a wheel format rather than a block, is clothbound, and is aged a bit longer. Its flavors are more pronounced: deeply nutty and a tiny bit citrusy, and much earthier.

The wheel is technically called a “truckle,” which refers to its shape and easily portable size.

Back in December, my (former) co-monger Alicia cut one of these bad boys while we were working a graveyard shift to prepare for the madness of Christmas cheese sales.

The butter-rubbed cloth gets scored, the truckle is broken down into layers, the cloth is removed from each layer, and then the layers get cut into pieces. See for yourself.

And yes, that is totally the conversation of delirious cheesemongers at about 1:00 a.m. on a Sunday morning.

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