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Cheese of the Week: Beehive Barely Buzzed

Beehive Barely Buzzed Cheese picture and logo via website

Recently I came upon this unique and delicious Utah cheddar that is rubbed with espresso and lavender. I was thrilled with the spectacular flavors that danced on my palate, so savory and rich. This Utah cheddar is called Barely Buzzed, a winner of 20 major awards, and is so amazing it has become my next bad habit!

Barely Buzzed is so easy to pair, stunning to look at, and always the center of attention on the cheese board, truly the perfect party cheese! The espresso and lavender rub imparts notes of butterscotch and caramel, which are prevalent near the rind, but flow their way to the center of the cheese. Barely Buzzed is a unique full-bodied cheese with a nutty flavor and smooth texture.

Hours after it's made, the special grind is rubbed on the rind. Then the 20-pound wheel ages for 6-8 months, while cheesemakers test each batch to determine the right time to introduce the wheel into the world. Barely Buzzed cheese is made with a vegetarian rennet, cow's milk, all ingredients rubbed on the rind are organic, and is a gluten-friendly product!

The creation of Barely Buzzed Cheese was during Beehive's first year of being in business! Owner and founder Tim Welsh combined whole bean coffee and a dash of local Utah lavender in a burr grinder and decided to rub it on an experimental 5 pound ' baby' wheel of Promontory. The coffee was and still is roasted in Grand Junction, CO by Tim's brother at Colorado Legacy Coffee Company. As the baby wheel went into the aging cooler, they almost forgot about it, until their cheesemaking mentors from Utah State University came out to visit. They tasted this unnamed unique cheese and were completely baffled by their original assumptions and opinions! Barely Buzzed cheese was launched into the spotlight in 2007 when it won first place at the American Cheese Society Conference.

Personally, I think the best part about this cheese is how creative I can get with pairings, it really is so versatile. For a sweet tooth moment try Barely Buzzed cheese with toasted nuts, chocolate, or berries. If you're feeling hungry and looking for something savory, go for the Buzzed Cowboy Sammy from Beehive Cheese's recipe on their website! Barely Buzzed Cheese photo from Beehive's website


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