10 Best Goat Cheese: Discovering the World’s Finest Goat Cheeses for Every Palate

When you’re talking cheeses, you gotta know they’re not all born the same. You’ve got your cow, goat, and sheep milk types. And within them, a whole universe of flavors and textures waiting to dance on your palate. Goat cheese, in particular, brings its unique game to the cheese board, with varieties that can range from the soft and spreadable cream cheese to tangy goat cheese balls rolled in fresh herbs or covered in a herby shell. Imagine popping one of those into your mouth, paired with some thinly sliced figs or tangy snap peas. That’s not just eating; that’s an experience.

Then there’s the art of serving it. Picture laying out a charcuterie board with a mix of milk cheeses, adding some fresh chèvre right beside the semi-aged stuff like a classic goat Humboldt, maybe even a frozen curd that melts the second it hits something warm. Sprinkle in some herbed goat cheese, maybe one with rosemary or even those delightful soft goat cheese types with a creamy texture that practically begs to be spread on a cracker. We’re not just making a meal; we’re crafting memories, one bite at a time.

Unveiling the Top Goat Cheeses Worldwide

Alright, let’s cut to the chase and talk about some of the crème de la crème of goat cheeses out there. We’ve scoured the globe, from the green pastures of France to the rugged landscapes of Spain. And we brought you a list that’s bound to tickle those taste buds into submission with its intense flavors and diverse textures. This is about kicking that tangy goat cheese up a notch and exploring what makes each of these varieties stand out in a crowded pasture. We even included a USA-made goat cheese, yes you read it, a USA-made fresh goat cheese exists.

1. Humboldt Fog From Cypress Grove Chevre

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Ever heard of Humboldt Fog? This beauty from Cypress Grove Chevre is like the cooler, edgier cousin of your regular old goat cheese. Not to diss the classics, but Humboldt Fog brings something different to the table.

It’s got layers, quite literally, with a line of vegetable ash through the middle that’s more about style than anything else. Don’t let that fool you, though. It’s not just looking pretty; this cheese packs a flavorful punch with a buttermilk tang and a citrusy brightness that cuts through the fog of any cheese platter.

Aged Goat Cheese: A Delicate Balance of Flavor

Now, aging goat cheese isn’t like letting a fine wine sit. It’s a whole different ball game that’s all about finding the perfect balance of flavors. As it ages, goat cheese develops a complexity that can range from slightly tangy to deeply savory, making each bite a little adventure in your mouth. Whether it’s fresh out of the creamery or has been sitting, getting tastier with time, aged goat cheese is a testament to the cheesemaker’s craft, a perfect harmony of texture and taste.

2. Bonne Bouche From Vermont Creamery

Bonne Bouche Goat Cheese

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Next stop, Bonne Bouche from the folks over at Vermont Creamery. Inspired by the traditional techniques of the Loire Valley, this is the American dream of goat cheeses. It’s like they took the essence of France and mixed it with Vermont’s green pastures. The result? A creamy, ash-covered delight that’s as good on a sunny day as it is by the light of the fridge at midnight.

Baked Goat Cheese: A Culinary Delight

Oh, baked goat cheese, where have you been all my life? Picture this: a golden crust hiding a molten core of creamy, tangy goodness. It’s the stuff of dreams, my friends. When goat cheese hits that hot oven and comes out transformed, ready to be slathered on a crusty piece of bread or tossed in a salad, it’s not just cooking; it’s a form of magic. A culinary delight that turns the simple into the sublime.

3. Goat Brie

Finest goat brie cheese

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Now, for a little twist on a classic, let’s talk Goat Brie. This cheese might be playing dress-up in brie’s creamy, bloomy rind, but it’s got that goat milk heart beating strong beneath the surface. It’s creamy, yes, but with a hint of that tangy kick we love about goat cheese. It’s like Brie decided to go on a flavor vacation, and let me tell you, we’re all invited to the party.

Herbes de Provence: Enhancing Cheese with Herbal Notes

Imagine taking a bite of cheese and getting transported straight to the lavender fields of Provence. That’s what you get when you introduce Herbes de Provence into the mix. This blend of fresh herbs isn’t just for show. It brings out a cheese’s natural flavors while adding a layer of complexity that’s both aromatic and utterly enchanting. It’s like a fairy tale for your taste buds, where every nibble brings a new adventure.

Exploring Unique Goat Cheese Flavors and Textures

Ready to dive into a world where goat cheese is more than just a tangy treat? From the creamy to the crumbly and everything in between, each variety is a testament to the versatility of goat’s milk. These cheeses are ready to take your palate on a journey of discovery, one sumptuous bite at a time.

4. Verde Capra Goat Cheese

Verde Capra Goat Cheese

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Ever had a cheese that’s both squishy and silken, challenging everything you thought you knew about texture? Enter Verde Capra, a goat’s milk blue that’s as intriguing as it is delicious. It’s a testament to the cheese-making craft, merging the boldness of blue mold with the delicate sensibility of goat’s milk to create something truly special.

The Magic of Blue Mold in Goat Cheese

Blue mold in goat cheese isn’t just about adding a splash of color. It’s a flavor powerhouse, bringing an earthy intensity that elevates the cheese to new heights. When you bring this element into the mix, it transforms the cheese, adding layers of complexity and a boldness that’s undeniably captivating. It’s not just cheese; it’s an experience waiting to unfold with every bite.

5. La Bonne Vie

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Meet La Bonne Vie, the almond milk-colored drum of goodness that’s as pleasing to the eye as it is to the palate. With a wrinkly rind that speaks to the traditional yeast used in its making and a tangy, nutty flavor profile, this cheese is like a little drum of happiness. It’s the kind of cheese that compels you to keep coming back for just one more bite until it’s vanished. Pure magic.

Savoring the Softness and Richness

La Bonne Vie is all about savoring the moment. That soft, rich texture is more than just a treat; it’s a reminder to slow down and enjoy the finer things in life. The way its flavors unfold in your mouth, from the tangy outer rind to the creamy core, is a journey worth savoring. It’s a cheese that doesn’t just satisfy your cravings but enriches them, turning each tasting into a moment of pure indulgence.

6. Aged Goat Gouda

Gouda Goat Cheese

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Speaking of indulgence, let’s not overlook Aged Goat Gouda. This isn’t your average gouda; it’s a sweet and savory symphony, crafted with the kind of care that turns cheese into legend. With hints of caramel and a texture that’s both smooth and satisfyingly crunchy from those little protein crystals, it’s a testament to the magic that happens when goat cheeses are given time to mature.

The Complexities of Aging and Flavor Development

Aging goat cheese is like tuning an instrument. Each day that passes fine-tunes its flavor and texture, leading to a symphony of taste that’s both rich and nuanced. This process of development is a delicate dance between time and nature, resulting in cheeses that are not only delicious but are a reflection of the cheesemaker’s artistry and dedication to quality. Whether it’s the creamy decadence of a fresh chèvre or the bold, complex character of an aged tomme, each cheese tells a story of tradition, innovation, and passion. Through this journey of discovery, we find not just the world’s finest goat cheeses but the heart and soul poured into each wheel and wedge.

A Journey Through Goat Cheese Varieties

Now, if you’ve ever ventured beyond the standard cheese in your sandwich, you know there’s a big, wide world of cheeses out there. And among those, goat cheese holds a special place with its unique flavors and textures. It’s kind of like the underdog of the cheese world, making a name for itself and surprising folks with how versatile it can be. So, let’s take a trip through some of the standout varieties that could make even the pickiest eaters give goat cheese a second look.

7. Garrotxa

Garrotxa Goat Cheese

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Now, Garrotxa might just make a goat cheese fan out of the doubters. This cheese comes from Spain, and it’s got a charm that can win over anyone. Imagine a bite that brings you a mix of toasted hazelnuts and the freshness of grasses and scrub brush, kind of like a hike through the foothills of the Pyrénées without leaving your kitchen. And the texture? It’s like finding a soft patch of moss in the forest; it’s moist and holds together, almost like it’s telling you, “Hey, I’m flavorful without being too intense.” But don’t be fooled by its gentle nature; Garrotxa’s got depth, thanks to its pasteurized milk foundation.

The Rustic Charm of Spanish Cheesemaking

It’s fascinating how Spanish cheesemaking brings out such a rich tapestry of flavors, especially in Garrotxa. This cheese takes you right to the heart of traditional crafts, where each bite reflects the love and patience put into aging it just right. And that moleskin-textured rind? It’s like a nod to the old ways, soft as kitten fur, hinting at the lushness wrapped inside. Spanish cheesemaking doesn’t just produce cheese; it crafts experiences, wrapping them in flavors that carry whispers of the countryside and its timeless traditions.

8. Crumbled Cheese Made in USA

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Crumbled Goat Cheese is the kind of cheese that makes you sit up and pay attention. It hails from the USA (yes we can make goat cheese in the USA), bringing with it an elegance that’s hard to ignore. The way it bears the taste of the milk, like a piece of well-loved pottery, adds a layer of charm to its unique saucer shape. But it’s not just about taste. Dive a little deeper, and you’ll discover a world of floral flavors, finished off with a hint of ice cream. It’s like the USA decided to take the essence of a meadow and pack it into a cheese. Who knew elegance could taste this good?

USA Elegance in Goat Cheese Form

If you thought USA refinement was just about eating with no flavor, wait until you try Crumbled. This cheese is like the refined cousin in the goat cheese family, bringing a touch of class to any table it graces. The packaging does not do it justice, but the rich cream line inside the packaging speaks of meticulous attention to detail, embodying the very spirit of USA recent culinary tradition. And when it melts on your tongue with those delicate floral notes? That’s when you realize that elegance isn’t just how something looks, but how it delights your senses, too.

9. Queso de Murcia al Vino PDO

Queso de Murcia Goat Cheese

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Ever thought about taking goat cheese and giving it a little wine makeover? Well, Queso de Murcia al Vino PDO does just that, and let me tell you, it’s something special. This Spanish delight, also known as Drunken Goat, gets its kick from being washed in red wine, giving it a fruity edge that’s hard to resist. It strikes a balance, though, retaining the soft, powdery essence of goat milk without letting the wine hijack the show. It’s like the cheese found a way to party with the wine but still wake up feeling like itself in the morning.

Wine-Infused Delicacies from Spain

In the world of goat cheese, Queso de Murcia al Vino PDO stands out with its boozy charm. The red wine bath not only gives the cheese a stunning hue but infuses it with flavors that make you think of celebratory toasts and hearty chuckles among friends. It’s a meeting point for wine lovers and cheese aficionados, proving once again that sometimes, mixing two great things creates something even more magical. This cheese is like the life of the party, bringing people together and making them wonder, “Where have you been all my life?”

10. Greek Feta Cheese

Goat mix with sheep milk cheese

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When you come across Parthenon Feta Cheese, you know you’ve found something special. This cheese takes inspiration from the beloved cow milk Taleggio but turns the tables by using a mixture of goat and sheep milk. The result? A fresh goat/sheep cheese that’s innovative yet familiar, eschewing the typical tanginess of goat milk for a milder, doughy taste reminiscent of soft baby powder. It’s kind of like the cheese world’s friendly nod to people who think they don’t like sheep and goat cheese, serving up a gentle introduction to what goat/sheep milk can do when it’s given a chance to shine in a new way.

A Rare Gem in the Goat and Sheep Cheese World

Parthenon Feta isn’t just a cheese; it’s a statement. It tells a tale of innovation, challenging the status quo of what goat cheese can become when mixed with sheep milk. This cheese doesn’t come at you with pungency or sharpness. Instead, it opts for a subtler, inviting approach, making it a rare gem in a sea of bold flavors. Through the lens of Parthenon, goat/sheep milk finds a fresh expression, borrowing notes from its cow milk cousin to craft something that feels both exciting and comforting. In the world of goat cheese, Parthenon Feta is a smooth talker, persuading even the skeptics to take a bite and discover a new side of goat cheese.

Final Verdict

After exploring an array of exquisite goat cheeses from around the world, it is clear that each cheese offers a unique and delightful culinary experience. Among the top selections, one standout is the Humboldt Fog from Cypress Grove Chevre. This particular cheese captivates your soul with its layers of flavor. It includes a buttermilk tang and citrusy brightness, but it also showcases the artistry and innovation of the cheesemaker.

The Humboldt Fog stands out as a bold and flavorful option. It surely is made to impress any cheese connoisseur. Therefore, when seeking the ultimate goat cheese that combines taste, texture, and complexity, the Humboldt Fog emerges as a top choice. It simply embodies the richness and diversity of the world’s finest goat cheeses. So, elevate your cheese board and indulge in a sensory delight with the unforgettable Humboldt Fog.

Embracing the World of Goat Cheese

Goat cheese is a lot like life itself – full of variety, texture, and little surprises around every corner. Whether it’s the earthy richness of a Spanish Garrotxa or the wine-kissed delight of Queso de Murcia al Vino PDO, there’s something out there for everyone. And let’s not forget the newcomers like Nababbo, proving that even in the well-trodden paths of cheesemaking, there’s room for innovation. Embracing goat cheese means opening yourself up to a world where the usual rules don’t apply, where every bite is an adventure, and where the underdog can surprise you with just how much charm and flavor it packs.

The Ultimate Guide to Selecting the Best Goat Cheese

So, you wanna dive into the world of goat cheese but don’t know where to start? Look no further; the key is in paying attention to the bloomy rind, the crumbly texture, and the bursts of cheese flavors. It’s like becoming a cheese detective, looking for clues that tell you about the cheese’s character and how it’s gonna rock your taste buds. And remember, the best goat cheese is the one that sings to your palate, whispering tales of pastoral fields, traditional craftsmanship, and culinary artistry. This isn’t just about adding a slice of cheese to your meal – it’s about discovering new sensations and welcoming the rich diversity of goat cheese into your life.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

Q: What are the benefits of eating goat cheese?

A: Goat cheese is lower in lactose and calories compared to cow's milk cheese, making it a suitable option for individuals with lactose intolerance. It is also a good source of protein, calcium, and other essential nutrients.

Q: What is the difference between plain goat cheese and flavored goat cheese?

A: Plain goat cheese is simply made with goat's milk without any additional flavorings, while flavored goat cheese has added ingredients like herbs, fruits, or spices to enhance its taste. Flavored goat cheeses can range from savory to sweet profiles.

Q: What is the flavor profile of goat cheese compared to other types of cheese like cheddar or blue cheese?

A: Goat cheese has a distinct flavor that is often described as earthy, tangy, and slightly sweet, with a creamy texture. In comparison, cheddar cheese is sharper and more savory, while blue cheese has a pungent, bold flavor profile.

Q: Can goat cheese be used in making a cheese course?

A: Yes, goat cheese can be a delicious addition to a cheese course. Pair it with fruits, nuts, crackers, and honey to create a well-balanced cheese platter with a variety of flavors and textures.

Q: Are there any popular goat cheese recipes that I can try at home?

A: Yes, goat cheese is versatile and can be used in various recipes such as salads, pastas, tarts, and appetizers. Try making a goat cheese and caramelized onion tart or a mixed greens salad with goat cheese and balsamic vinaigrette.

Q: Where can I find the best goat cheese in a supermarket?

A: The best supermarket goat cheese options can typically be found at the specialty cheese section of well-stocked supermarkets or gourmet food stores. Look for brands like Laura Chenel or artisanal goat cheese producers for high-quality options.

Q: What is goat cheese and how is it different from cow's milk cheese?

A: Goat cheese is a type of cheese made from goat's milk, while cow's milk cheese is made from cow's milk. Goat cheese is known for its distinct flavor profile, which can be tangy, earthy, and slightly sweet compared to the milder taste of cow's milk cheese.

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