Jupiter Moon: A Mellow Goat Cheese
December 3, 2010
Jupiter Moon was a no-brainer for us at the cheese counter because it satisfied one taster’s desire for a washed rind cheese and another’s love for goat cheese. Yet, Jupiter Moon surprised us with its mellow flavor and firm texture. This goat cheese is easy to enjoy.
Jupiter Moon is farmstead produced by River Edge Chevre in Oregon. It is a firm goat’s milk cheese with a washed rind. During its finishing, Jupiter Moon is bathed in a brine that contains Madrone Mountain Late Harvest White Wine, a locally produced wine. Jupiter Moon is then wrapped in a nut grass that is harvested on the farm. Aging time for the cheese varies; the producer delivers Jupiter Moon to market “ready to eat, but not totally ripe.”
Jupiter Moon is a beauty. Its rind looks doused with bright orange pollen. Some white and gray-purple surface molds populate the rind’s side. Jupiter Moon’s top and bottom shows a tight grid imprint, while its sidewall is bumpy.
Jupiter Moon’s interior paste is pale and smooth. It has a thick layer of translucent paste beneath the rind that is pocked with flat holes. As the paste nears the cheese’s core, it becomes dense, dry and cakey.
Jupiter Moon’s rind smells like freshly mowed grass and mineral water. Its aroma is inviting; it lacks off-putting odors more common among washed rind cheeses.
Jupiter Moon is a mellow cheese that provides contrast in flavor and texture. It has a distinct tangy goat cheese flavor in its denser paste, but this is balanced by a sour fruitiness in the translucent paste. Jupiter Moon is firm and chewy, with a more grainy texture at its denser core. The contrast in textures between the two pastes makes for interesting mouth feel.
Jupiter Moon is a goat cheese with a interesting twist. It combines a familiar goat cheese flavor with a different texture and mild fruity sourness. We all liked this cheese a lot and polished off our entire sample during our tasting.
This cheese looks gorgeous on the plate and remains firm out of refrigeration, making it a good one to show off at an outdoor meal or party.
Purchase Notes: We purchased Jupiter Moon at Cheese Plus (San Francisco).