When our cheese reaches the ripe old age of a year or so, it’s textures have become rather short (the cheese crumbles or breaks when cut) and developed a pleasant, crunchy feel (from crystals that start to form) in the mouth !!
It’s flavours have greatly intensified and words like intense, piquant or sharp, come to mind, but also fresh and clean !
That’s when we start to refer to our cheese as Growlers (old, very old, really very old)
They are real dynamite when served sliced, on crackers, fresh bread (white or whole wheat) or steamed breads, like black pumpernickel, or grated on dishes like pastas and pizza!
And as they continue to age they eventually compare to a Parmesan (hard, brittle, intense, great for grating!)
By that time (2-5 years) we call it Hammer and Chisel cheese.
Did you know why aged, grated, powdered cheese is used so much in cooking? Not so much because of its flavour, but of what it does to the other flavours! It greatly compliments and even enhances them!! (like a natural MSG)