5 Raw Cheese Picks with Andrew's Cheese Shop

We caught up with Andrew Steiner, former Maitre d’Fromage of LA’s famed Patina and owner of his own namesake store on Santa Monica’s Montana Avenue.

Without a doubt, there’ll have been cheers city-wide when Andrew opened his retail location in 2008.  The cheese plate-obsessed had enjoyed his work with the famed cheese cart at Patina and could now access and recreate the experience for dinner parties at home. We thought our health-conscious TCM readers might enjoy getting in on the act, so we requested from Andrew his five best picks for raw cheeses.

Pop by Andrew’s before your next get-together and let his knowledgeable staff help you with pairings that your guests will skip dessert for!

The Cheese: Ascutney Mountain Tomme
Source: Hartland, VT
Flavor Profile: Similar to an older Comte. Very buttery, crystalline, onion, straight up Alpine flavors of grass, brown butter, nuts and sweetness.
Best Use: This is definitely a winter cheese. Just butter up a baguette and throw a slice on. Ascutney is in my top five American cheeses I’ve ever tasted.

The Cheese: Andeerer Traum
Source: Andeer, Southeast Switzerland
Flavor Profile: Also Alpine in style; amazing flavors of cocoa, hay, and flowers. Second place overall, 2010 World Cheese Cup.
Best Use: Serve with any extremely acidic white wine like Chasselas, dry Riesling, or Albariňo.

The Cheese: Winnimere
Source: Greensboro, Vermont
Flavor Profile: Gooey, gritty, smelly, runny, sexy, wrapped in spruce bark.
Best Use: Baked with potatoes, this cheese will melt your brain.

The Cheese: Kirkham’s Lancashire
Source: Lancashire, England via Neal’s Yard Dairy
Flavor Profile: Butter crumble and lemon curd. Prototypical English iron ore minerality.
Best Use: After dinner with a spicy wine like a Barbera or Sangiovese.

The Cheese: Roqufort L’Aigle Noir
Source: Auvergne, France
Flavor Profile: Simply the best. Not cheap but you don’t need much. Grassy, smooth, rich, nutty, sheepy, complex, salty, powerful. This is magical cheese.
Best Use: Drizzle a touch of honey on your baguette or enjoy some Sauternes to balance the salt out of this one. Not too much, though – this is a strong cheese with delicate flavors and lots of nuance.

Check out Andrew’s Cheese Shop at AndrewsCheese.com

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