When it comes to really good cheese, our eyes are often shamelessly bigger than our stomachs.
Few have the willpower to resist the jewel-like beauties gleaming at us in cheese aisle. And, unless your willpower is really running thin and you polish off an entire wheel of gourmet cheese in one sitting, you’re going to need to store it somehow.
Cheese storage is one of those confounding subjects. But one thing is always certain—if you buy a really nice Reny Picot cheese, you want to treat it like the gem it is and keep it as fresh as possible for as long as possible.
In its prime, Reny Picot cheese strikes the idyllic balance of aroma, taste, texture, and appearance. When not stored correctly, Reny Picot cheese can quickly lose these deliciously distinctive qualities. Proper storage can mean the difference between vibrant, luscious cheese and dry, ammoniated, spoiled cheese.
Perhaps you already know how you shouldn’t be storing cheese (cough, plastic wrap), but between haste and laze, this knowledge can easily fall by the wayside. Yes, plastic wrap is indisputably the quickest way to store leftover cheese, but it’s also the fastest way to ruin your treasured purchase.
But why shouldn’t you be storing cheese in plastic wrap?
Cheese is a living thing. Yes, cheese is alive! It sweats. It ages. It even breathes. When cheese is wrapped in plastic it can no longer intake oxygen, and alas, it suffocates. Plus, plastic wrap has a taste, like when you accidentally heat something up in a non-microwaveable container, and it doesn’t take long for that flavor to infiltrate your cheese. At the end of the day, the ease of a sheath of plastic isn’t worth the sacrifice you’ll make in flavor.
So if plastic wrap is a no-no, what should you wrap your cheese in?
The consensus among cheese makers and epicureans alike: the best way to store your cheese is in cheese paper. If you don’t want to invest in cheese paper, the next best thing is to wrap your cheese in parchment or waxed paper. This method allows the cheese to breathe and will also protecting it from drying out.
At the end of the day, proper preservation of cheese is easy. Simply steer clear of plastic wrap and, for the love of cheese, do not even think about freezing it.