The only source of Limburger cheese in the U.S. is Master Cheese Maker Myron Olson from the Chalet Cheese Cooperative. This cheese is well known for its pronounced aroma from rind-washing in brine.
Describing Limburger cheese to the uninitiated presents a challenging minefield of adjectives. “Pungent” and “aromatic” are the words given by the experts. But even an experienced cheeseman such as Olson veers into less-than-pleasant imagery when describing the Limburger experience. “I don’t want to say barn-y,” he says, “but, yeah, it’s kind of like a barn-y flavor and smell.”
The bacteria used to make Limburger is truly Chalet’s own. Following every batch, workers collect bacteria from the aging cheeses and culture it for the next batch. Chalet’s particular strain of Limburger bacteria dates back to the opening days of the co-op, in 1885. It makes Wisconsin’s distinctive among the world’s Limburgers.
Make sure it is aged at least five months, but no longer than six. For the first four months, it tastes more like bland feta. Creaminess and flavor develop as the bacteria works its way from the outside toward the center. If it’s not creamy all the way through, you’re not getting the proper Limburger experience.
Pairing suggestions: Crackers or dark breads with onion slices and mustard; Spotted Cow lager.