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Jun 21, 2009 02:45 AM

Waiting for Gouda - what's your favorite?

This store I was in today had over a dozen varieties of Gouda. Turns out that Gouda can be made with cow’s milk, sheep’s milk, or goat’s milk. It can be various ages from the young cheeses usually with red and yellow wax exteriors to aged goudas, sometimes with black wax that are aged five years or more. Of course there's smoked gouda. There's gouda with stuff in it like herbs, flaxseed (vlaskaas), spices, nuts ...etc, etc

There have been some good Chowhound discussions in the past that have introduced me to the joy of super-aged gouda

I found this excellent article with everything you want to know about Gouda, history, how it is made, what to pair it with and the result of tasting 13 types

That article says that the REAL pronunciation is "GAOW-duh" unlike the American “GOO-duh.”

So do you have some favorite variety or specific artisan brand?

How do you like to to eat your Gouda and with what? What is your favorite beverage pairing?

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  1. I really like aged Gouda. The Old Amsterdam Gouda from Trader Joe's is quite good at a fair price.

    1 Reply
    1. re: scuzzo

      I like this one too, it's pretty decent, and not bad price. Well at least it wasn't, I haven't purchased extravagant cheeses in awhile. darn it.

    2. the g in dutch is more like howda, with a raspy h sound

      i like it made from goat milk

      1 Reply
      1. re: thew

        That G is hard to translate into North American. For our UK and Eastern Canadian readers, it is somewhat similar to the ch in the Scottish word loch as spoken by a Glaswegian, but with a bit of 'g' thrown in for good measure.

        As Caitlan says below, the old (oude in Dutch) makes a good substitute for parmesan. Unfortunately it is no cheaper. Some of these are so crystaline that many people would find the texture unpleasant when eaten as a lump of cheese.

        Since the OP asked the question, mine would be extra belegen (aged / mature).

        I lived in the Netherlands and was determined to learn enough Dutch to survive. On one of my first forays to the deli counter there was some ham with a price on it and the type of meat - smickelhoek. So I asked "Een ons smickel hoek, alst u blijft" - 100 grams of ham please. She looked at me as though I was an idiot. I repeated it, more slowly and louder. The lass was obviously having problems with my accent. So we reverted to point and pick. She duly wrapped it up, put it on the counter, pointed at it and said "Ham".

        The next day I discovered I was asking for 100 grams of delicatessen counter.

      2. I just had some Beemster Gras Kaas Gouda last week. This gouda has a very creamy taste and mouthfeel - it's aged for only one month. Just slightly nutty in taste, it was a perfect way to greet summer. It went well with fresh fruit, fresh sausages, bread and a slightly sweet vouvray.

        1 Reply
        1. re: bulavinaka

          Here in France I grabbed a gouda the other week made with "orties," which I had no translation for. Came home and googled it to find they are "stinging nettles."
          It tasted amazing! Definitely my fav. gouda.

          Other than that, I've also really liked the ones made from goat milk.

        2. My farvorite is boerenkaas (the name means farmer cheese). It's a raw cows'-milk cheese, that's aged a minimum of a few months, but I recommend getting at least a 2-year-old version, and I've had a 5-year-old one that was amazing. These aged ones develop strong caramel notes and the salty crystals that create intense bursts of flavor (as in Parmigiano Reggiano). I'm not a huge fan of gouda in general, but I like the aged ones, and love the older boerenkaas.

          Here's a link with some info on boerenkaas:

          2 Replies
          1. re: Caitlin McGrath

            I love aged gouda - up to a point. I like it to be still chewable.

            I have a friend who's a real fanatic, he used to smuggle aged boerenkaas into the US 20 years ago when it was impossible to find here. I still remember the time he decided that since it tasted better the older it was, he was going to age one of the ones he brought back even longer. Unfortunately, a kitchen cupboard in Boston is not the best place to age a cheese. When he finally brought it out at a party a year or so later, it was so hard he couldn't cut it! He finally managed to crack a piece off with a hatchet - it was still tasty grated, but impossible to eat otherwise.

            1. re: Caitlin McGrath

              Caitlin, I am with you completely withe the aged boerenkaas! I love those salty crystals. This cheese is one of my favorite breakfast cheeses, served with a good crusty artisanal bread smeared with really good french butter, and served with stone fruits like cherries, plums, apricots. Such a lovely way to start the day.

            2. As to the right way to prnounce the name of ths cheeese - the Dutch "g" is is a gutteral, throat sound, making the word more like "ch-OO-dah"

              Still, that doesn't bother me as much as people who call the mid-Eastern chick-pea dish "CHUM-muss" instad of "ho-MOOSE".

              3 Replies
              1. re: ekammin

                Getting too close to "chowdah" - never try ordering gouda with an authentic accent in Boston unless you want the clammy soup.

                1. re: Cinnamon

                  Yes, good old Boston - the only place in the world where cheddar rhymes with feta. ;-)

                2. re: ekammin

                  LBR (love being right:) as I have learned it Chumus is [HUM-us] more correctly the H is ch as in Bach. FMPOV (from my point of view) [hoe-MOOSE] sounds silly.

                  And I speak Dutch (poorly: maar wil ik graag een gesprek hebben) and [HOW-duh} is how it is, again more correctly the H is ch as in Bach.

                  None of them bother me, the older I am the more amuseder I get.

                  How did I lose weight in Netherland, eating ruggesbrod, butter and cheese or salami for breakfast daily? Maybe it was the koffie.