EC eats

Cheeses even a cheesehead can’t stomach

Kyra Price

More stories from Kyra Price

Blotter
December 15, 2022
EC+eats

As a Wisconsinite, cheese is obviously one of my favorite things. It improves just about any savory dish to melt some sharp cheddar over the top. Sometimes smoked gouda is all a dish needs to go from good to great.

Even sweet dishes can be enhanced by the power of cheese. A basic buttercream frosting becomes 10 times better with some cream cheese blended in. A basic dessert becomes a delicacy when you mix in some ricotta for creaminess.

All this being said, there are some types of cheese I just can’t get behind.

Bleu Cheese

Bleu cheese has always freaked me out a bit. It’s one of my mom’s favorite dressings, so I was exposed to it at a young age.

I’ve always thought it had a funky smell and weird look. I like to try new things though, so this wasn’t enough to deter me on its own. The way bleu cheese is made, though? Totally different story.

People take cheese and inject it with mold. I understand that the mold is edible or it wouldn’t be served to people, but the idea itself makes me nauseous. Bleu cheese is a big no from me.

Limburger

In the fourth grade, in Wisconsin fashion, my teacher threw us a cheese party. Every kid brought in a different cheese, and we were provided with crackers to try them all out.

One particular cheese has stuck with me all these years later because of its horrible stench: limburger.

Imagine a locker room that’s been used by your high school’s football team right after the big game. Now mix that with the smell of a county fair port-a-potty that hasn’t gotten emptied in at least a week. That’s about what limburger smells like.

The stench of that cheese is permanently burnt into my nostrils. You better believe that cheese never made it even remotely close to my mouth, and it never will.

Casu Marzu

It’s hard for me to even write about this cheese because the mere idea of it disgusts me so much.

The first time I heard of casu marzu was in high school. It may have been in a documentary I watched for class, or I just came across it while mindlessly scrolling on my phone. Either way, the grossness of this cheese has stuck with me.

Casu marzu is a soft, creamy, sheep’s milk cheese. I’m not huge on cheeses from things other than cow’s milk, but with just this description, I’d be willing to give it a try.

Unfortunately, it doesn’t stop there.

An entire pecorino cheese is left outside with the rind taken off to allow cheese flies to lay their eggs in it. It’s essentially maggot cheese.

Casu marzu originated in Italy, but has been banned there since 1962. In fact, it is banned all throughout the United States and Europe due to laws banning foods infested with parasites.

The other cheeses I have personal experience with, and if I had to, I could probably eat those cheeses without vomiting.

Casu marzu on the other hand, I don’t even want within a five mile radius of me.

Price can be reached at [email protected]