Tower of Terroir 3: Double Skull Taleggio

Here’s some food for thought. What happens when we die? Eternal darkness, the void, pure nothing? Or is there life beyond the veil, a Refresh button for existense? And most importantly, what the hell does this have to do with cheese?

Fear not, for we have seen the afterlife, it is alive and well, it tastes like heaven. Perhaps you’ve yet to bask in the wonder of Double Skull Taleggio, a special product of Caputo’s Cheese Cave, in which case waste no further time. Come taste it in the market. Buy it now. It’s basically edible Lazarus, a miracle of the regenerative power of our cheese caves.


Let’s start with Taleggio. It’s Italy’s second-most popular cheese, second only to Parmigiano-Reggiano, and believe me, the two couldn’t be more different. Taleggio is a semi-soft, washed-rind, smear-ripened cheese with enormously pungent aromas (read: stinky), but surprisingly mellow, fruity flavors. It comes from the Val Taleggio in Lombardy, Italy, where it’s matured for somewhere between six to ten weeks. During this time, the cheese is washed down regularly with a salt brine during maturation, which prevents mold overgrowth while simultaneously making the surface of the cheese amenable to B. linens, a class of bacteria that impart said pungency and develop the cheese’s characteristic reddish-orange crust. 

When we receive our squares of Taleggio from Italy, these bricks of deliciousness are pretty much in a state of decay. This is where the real magic happens. Our affineuse (aka the cheese whisperer) starts the washing cycle all over, this time daily, and using Epic Brewing’s scary-good Double Skull Doppelbock Lager in place of the traditional saltwater bath, thus breathing new life back into this precious Taleggio. The results are transcendental. Deep, rounded flavors of malt, bread, and fruit. Wildly complex aromas. The essence of umami.

We’re serious when we say that to taste this cheese is to taste rebirth, a new life of flavor wrought in 97% humidity and daily beer baths. It’s a truly singular experience. So head on down to the market, pick up some Double Skull Taleggio, and celebrate the Day Of The Dead in true form (disclaimer: we can’t guarantee this will actually pair well with a sugar skull).

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