Family Cheese

Two for the cheese board from Brunkow

The scent of grilling cheese never fails to draw us to the Brunkow Cheese stand at the Green City Market.

But on a recent visit, we walked away with the two newest cheeses from Brunkow's Fayette Creamery line: the bold, stinky Pave Henri and the more docile Pave Francine, both made from the milk of a single herd of 15 grass-fed Wisconsin Jersey cows.

Named for cheesemaker Joe Burns' son, the Henri ($12 for an 8-ounce square) is a cheese for those who want a rich, grassy funk. Ripened for 40 days while being washed, Trappist-style, with brine, the small block has a thin, bloomy rind and a silky interior. Pair it with apples and Asian pears on a cheese board; Burns' favorite wine pairings are full, dry whites from Alsace–Riesling and Pinot Gris.

The Francine (named for daughter Franny; $10 for an 8-ounce square) is still being tweaked, but the current incarnation is superb. Aged for 60 days, then coated with herbes de Provence, it's a dense, dry, gently flavored cheese that can be sliced or grated.

Up next: a cheese for his younger son, Jack. Pommes Jacques is bathed in apple brandy during the affinage (aging process); look for it at the market come spring.