Unfortunately, most Americans typically haven’t grown up with the European experience of eating lots of cheeses lots of times.

So even if you’re interested in expanding your cheese horizons, it’s easy to feel intimidated by the options and just stick with what you know. But the best way to begin branching out with cheese: starting with what you already know and love. 

Here are a handful of common starting points and the most delicious next steps to expanding your cheese horizons:

If you like Cheddar…try Gouda

Gouda is distinct in character and diverse in style. It presents itself in so many different ways: young and mild, smoked and hearty, or gracefully aged. In its youth, Reny Picot Gouda is mild, soft, and creamy. When aged, Gouda evolves into a stronger, harder, crumblier cheese and develops a harmonious balance of sweet and savory flavors.

If you like Provolone…try Fontina

On its own, Fontina has a delicate, nutty, almost honey-like flavor. Although gentle on the palate, a slight tang asserts itself, but leaves no acidic or bitter aftertaste. Fontina is also one of the best melting cheeses around. When it goes gooey, Reny Picot Fontina adopts notes reminiscent of a deeply golden slice of toast.

If you like Baby Swiss…try Edam

Easily spotted by its signature red wax coating, Edam is smooth and supple with a clean aroma and has mellow tones of hazelnut and caramelized butter as its primary flavors. As with many cheeses American palates favor, Reny Picot Edam is consumed young and is a great choice for younger audiences as well with its softer nuances. 

If you like Brie…try Camembert

Camembert is known to be slightly more intense in character than the closely related Brie. They have a similar milky and sweet flavor profile, but Reny Picot Camembert entertains a deeper flavor and aroma. The bloomy rind intensifies the overall flavor profile of Camembert and offers an added dimension in texture, while the pearly interior is plump and kissed with slight hints of caramelized butter and sautéed mushrooms.

If you like Manchego…try Mantoro

Excusive to Old Europe Cheese, Reny Picot Mantoro is very similar to Spanish Manchego cheese, but is made from cow’s milk instead of the traditionally used sheep’s milk. The creamy golden color and combination of flavors present in Mantoro is a delicate balance of sweet and salty. The lasting sweetness combined with a distinct acidity that tingles as it melts on your tongue creates an invigorating tasting experience.

Ultimately, the best way to figure out what you like: sample, sample, sample.

If you’re looking to dive deeper into the world of cheese and upgrade your old reliables, Old Europe Cheese is a great starting point. Head to our Facebook page to learn more or contact us today if you have any questions for us here at Old Europe Cheese. We’d love to hear from you!