Now that I’m done venting my social observations from the symposium, I’d like to talk about one of the many great privileges we were handed in a bag. Literally. There were all sorts of goodies from our sponsors. One of them deserves a special mention, seeing as this company also took a fair bit of verbal beating on that day: Arla.
Arla, or “Evilcorp” as it may be known as by many purists, is the giant in dairy products in Denmark. It’s a company with many bad things on its conscience, but luckily it really knows how to make amends. In each of our goodie bags was an innovation cheese called “Troldhede Ask” from the Arla Unika series that has been “developed in cooperation with some of Denmark’s finest chefs”. While I was participating in the symposium, little did I know that a cheese of this caliber was waiting to happen. On the next day, hungover from wine and conversation, I presented my other half with this thing and thought “how nice of me to give him these treats, so he can fully appreciate them on my behalf”. Because the thing is, I’m not that into cheese. There. I’ve said it, now let the derision roar. But when you’re done, hear me out, because this cheese turned out to be the bee’s knees. When I tasted it I was suddenly converted. From a cheese-neglecter to someone who has now twice found herself voluntarily having some more on just a dull slice of bread. Can you believe it?
What you probably don’t know is that I was seriously traumatised as a child, when I, not liking cheese, was rubbed in the face by my brother’s cheese fingers and could just smell that out of place stench on my features for the rest of the day. Since then I’ve only gradually begun to venture into the odorific landscape but only with tiny, tiny amounts of cheese every time.
The downside is, that I really lack the necessary vocab to describe cheeses and my only reference points include “räkost” (Swedish “shrimp” cream cheese in a tube-hate the stuff) and cottage cheese (love the stuff). But what I can say is, that it has just the right amount of mouldy-yeasty flavour without that hard aftertaste of ammonia that some blue cheeses seem to have. The texture is unbelieveably smooth with a salty and smoky twang that lingers on in a good way. In short: The next time you go out gourmet dining, look for Troldhede Ask on the menu, because it is only distributed to selected restaurants in Denmark.