Mystic Cheese Co. Melinda Mae
- Animal Rennet
- Age: 11 days
- Cow Milk
- by Mystic Cheese Co
- United States
Much like the Shel Silverstein poem for which Melinda Mae is named, this bloomy rind cheese from Mystic Cheese Co. is an accessible American classic. Pudgy and smooth like Brie but not quite as funky. Button mushroom flavors at the rind give way to bright lemon, sweet milk, and baked bread notes in the luscious paste. A square packed up for a picnic will please all eaters, particularly with a jar of tart Blackberry Farm Strawberry Rhubarb Jam and slices of Murray’s Speck.
- Mystic Cheese Co. makes this cheese with single-herd cow’s milk from nearby Sunnyside Farm.
- The milk is heated, cultured, and cut into walnut-size curds before being transferred into square molds.
- The inspiration behind Melinda Mae was Italian bloomy rind Robiola.
- The downy white rind known as a bloomy rind is formed by intentionally cultivated molds that “bloom” on the surface of the cheese. The cheese is patted down during the aging process, layering the mold over time to form the delicate rind.
- All of Mystic Cheese Co.’s cheeses have whale-related names, a nod to the Connecticut town’s history of whaling. Melinda Mae is named for a Shel Silverstein poem in which a girl attempts to eat a whale.
- Pop a bottle of dry sparkling wine with Melinda Mae, as it’ll cut through the cheese’s richness.
- Though it started from humble beginnings—a cheesemaking facility in a shipping container—Mystic Cheese Co. now operates on solid ground out of a state-of-the-art facility in Groton, CT.
- Keeping things local, they make their cheeses using single-herd milk from Sunnyside Farm, a family-run farm operated by a friend.