The Irish Dairy Board is introducing Kerrygold Skellig, a sweet Cheddar cheese, to supermarkets and specialty stores across the US. A popular Cheddar variety in the UK, Kerrygold's sweet Cheddar is a complex cheese with a firm, yet creamy, texture, a distinct nuttiness and sweet apple notes. The cheese is not "sweet" as sugar is sweet, but describes an intensely flavorful, high-umami quality.
"The first thing you notice is how creamy it is," explained Laura Werlin, a James Beard Foundation Cookbook Award winner and one of the country's foremost authorities on cheese, in her tasting notes for Skellig. "This is followed by fruity, almost apple-like flavors with a decided sweetness. That's then chased with light brown butter and nutty flavors and an ever-so-slight sharpness on the finish. Altogether, it's an amazing experience."
Kerrygold is introducing Skellig in anticipation of a European trend the company expects will catch on in the US. "The trend in the UK and the rest of Europe is shifting towards a sweet Cheddar," said Roisin Hennerty, president of the US Consumer Foods business. "Brand research abroad shows consumers favor sweeter Cheddars over more traditional Cheddars and we expect a similar taste evolution to occur in the States. Skellig captures the flavor profile that is in demand in Europe."
Like all Kerrygold cheeses and butters, Skellig is made in Ireland with milk from grass-fed cows that are free of artificial growth hormones. The cows are raised on small family farms, with an average herd size of 60.
Format: Kerrygold Skellig will be available in 7-oz parchment packages.
Uses: A deliciously complex cheese, Skellig can be used to add seductive flavor to any culinary applications for Cheddar. Serve it as part of a cheese board. Thread small cubes on skewers alternating with dates or dried figs. Shred it on salads or melt it over a burger.
Availability: Kerrygold Skellig will be available beginning in March at major supermarkets and specialty stores. For specific information about distribution, contact Molly O'Loughlin (firstname.lastname@example.org or 847-492-8331).