Thursday, November 20, 2014

Have A Vegan Wine And Cheese Party!
Stock Up On Miyoko's Artisan Vegan "Cheese"
Perfect For Holiday Entertaining

Finally, Vegan "cheese" that tastes like cheese. Thanks Miyoko!

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Really, it Tastes Like Cheese!
I've always been very honest with you about vegan "cheese" because, let's face it, most of it is horrible. Some fake "cheese" products are passible buried in a lasagna or enchilada casserole but they simply do not taste good on a cracker and I certainly wouldn't ruin a good glass of wine eating them.

But Miyoko's Kitchen has produced a wide variety of "Cultured Nut Products" (they legally can't call it cheese because it lacks dairy) that are out of this world. 

A few years back, Miyoko tried to inspire people to make their own in her book, Artisan Vegan Cheese but enough people encouraged her to just make the "cheese" products and sell them. Well, she finally did just that and many vegans and those allergic to dairy, like myself, are very grateful. And, they are all gluten free.

If you want to try and do this yourself, buy
Artisan Vegan Cheese by Miyoko Schinner

Lots of Products to Choose From
I haven't yet tried them all but I'll list them for you.

Classic Double Cream Chive
This one is amazing. I grated some on a baked potato with a spoonful of Tofutti sour cream and I was in heaven. You can also use some to stir into your vegan mashed potatoes for Thanksgiving dinner. You won't be disappointed. 
This has a 60 day shelf life.
Double Cream Chive pairs well with a tannic Chianti, Pinot Gris or Sauvignon Blanc.

Double cream chive on top of a baked potato with Tofutti

Double Cream Sundried Tomato Garlic
I also loved this one and crumbled it on top of a homemade veggie pizza. It didn't really melt  but the flavors were wonderful. I think next time I will spread it on the crust first before putting the veggies on or grate it so it's thinner. It think it would melt if it were stirred into hot pasta. It would go beautifully with a nice Chianti.
This product has a 60 day shelf life.

Double Cream Sundried Tomato Garlic on veggie pizza

High Sierra Rustic Alpine
I think this one is my favorite. It's semi hard so it cuts well if you want to put it on a cracker or a slice of apple. To me it has the flavor of an aged cheddar with hints of bacon. I wanted to try making a panini with this "cheese" but I loved it so much I just consumed it all before I had a chance. Time to buy more!
Although I can't imagine it lasting very long in the fridge, this product has a nice long 90 day shelf life.
High Sierra Rustic Alpine can stand up to a good Cabernet Sauvignon but is also delightful with a Sauvignon Blanc. 

Fresh Loire Valley in a Fig Leaf
This soft wheel is beautifully wrapped in a wine-cured fig leaf. I haven't had a chance to try this one yet but Miyoko suggests serving with fruit and crackers and pairing with a full-bodied Cabernet Sauvignon, a classic Bordeaux or a Semillon. 
It has a shelf live of 60 days.

I'm borrowing this picture from Miyoko's website so you can
see just how beautifully this one is presented.

I will get a chance to finally try this one on Friday!

French Style Winter Truffle
Marbled with truffle-scented mushrooms, this earthy delight was my daughter's favorite. Perhaps that's because it paired so beautifully with our Turtle Vines vegan Russian River Pinot Noir!
This product has the shortest shelf life of 30 days but do you think it would last that long around your holiday guests? I think not.

Read more about why you should drink vegan wine.

Aged English Sharp and Aged English Smoked Farmhouse
I tried the sharp version which was wonderful just on a simple cracker. It tasted like an aged cheddar with very complex flavors and paired nicely with a Petite Syrah.
Both of these have a nice long shelf life of 90 days.

Country Style Herbes de Provence
This beautiful wheel is encrusted in herbs and since it pairs beautifully with champagne and Prosecco, what better "cheese" to serve on New Year's Eve? But you obviously have to be a fan of Herbes de Provence.
This one also has a nice long shelf life of 90 days.

Country Style Herbes de Provence

How to Buy
Since these are made in Fairfax, California, I assume the product will start popping up in some local grocery stores in Northern California soon. I believe it is being carried in a Whole Foods in Novato and in the Community Market at the Barlow in Sebastopol. But if you can't find it in your town, you can buy it online at Miyoko's Kitchen Website. Right now you can only buy preselected collections of these "cheeses" and are not able to select individual products (I don't know if that will change in the future). For example:

The Harvest Collection contains: 
Fresh Loire Valley in a Fig Leaf
French Style Winter Truffle
High Sierra Rustic Alpine
Classic Double Cream Cheese
Double Cream Sundried Tomato Garlic

The Traditional Collection offers:
Aged English Sharp Farmhouse
Aged English Smoked Farmhouse
High Sierra Rustic Alpine

The Party Platter contains:
A Limited Edition Double Cream Garlic Herb
Fresh Loire Valley in a Fig Leaf
French Style Winter Truffle
High Sierra Rustic Alpine
Aged English Sharp Farmhouse
Double Cream Sundried Tomato Garlic

But if you are going to pay for shipping, you might as well load up on these wonderful products and get a chance to taste a wide variety of them. Miyoko suggests you order before Monday, November 24th at 12:00pm (PST) if you want delivery before Thanksgiving.

A big THANK YOU to Miyoko for making these wonderful products!

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