Bay Blue by Point Reyes Farmstead Cheese Co. [Marin County]
Point Reyes Farmstead Cheese Company is known for its Original Blue, made with raw cow's milk. Not one of my favorites, the lactic bite, brittle texture, and lack of depth did not appeal to me.
Last fall Point Reyes released a new blue, made with pasteurized milk, and modeled after Stilton. I've tasted it three times now: April, June, and August, and with each successive try, I like it more. No idea if these represent different batches or simply greater age contributing more flavor impact. In any case, this is a completely different beast than the Original Blue. The bluing seems more dense and the paste has a velvety, fudge-like texture and notes of honey. This strikes me as a much richer and earthier cheese all-round though it does finish a bit abruptly.
Bay Blue is not listed on the producer's website yet. Each cheesemonger has told me that it is in very limited supply. It's been spotted at The Shed and Big John's in Healdsburg, Freestone Artisan Cheeses, and Farmstead Cheeses in Alameda.