On one of my regular meanders through our local Checkers Cheese World, I found a Milwaukee smoke flavoured semi hard cheese. Not a smoked cheese, but smoke flavored cheese. Of course, with all the smoky notes in whisky, I had to see what this interesting cheese would pair with. This is a cow’s milk cheese from the Morning Milk company.
This factory is situated in the quiet and rustic atmosphere Heidelberg, Western Cape, halfway between Cape Town and Knysna in the Overberg region. I can’t find much more information on this cheese or company.
The Smokey Joe cheese has a very strong smoke taste, which, on its own, can be a bit overwhelming. It is creamy with a mild nutty note and has a light yellow colour. It is an affordable cheese. There were very few suggestions around whisky pairings for this cheese. So, we took the smoky notes and paired it with whiskies where we picked up mild smoke. We did however look for whiskies robust enough to stand up to the creaminess and flavouring.
Black Bottle & Milwaukee Smokey Joe cheese pairing
What an amazing pairing. Our tasting notes for the Black Bottle blended whisky included notes of The nose is very subtle with hints of florals, toffee sweetness and spices. Smoky and hints of peat with wood, burnt sugars and spice. It is complex and rich. The Smokey Joe cheese brought out more sweet notes in the whisky and made the Black Bottle finish even longer. The Black Bottle whisky enhanced the creamy notes of the cheese smoothed out the smokey flavor. We give this Black Bottle and Milwaukee Smokey Joe cheese pairing a Rating 4/5.
Scottish Leader Original & Milwaukee Smokey Joe cheese pairing
The official tasting notes for this Scottish Leader Original blended whisky include full bodied, a subtle smokiness, fruity with hints of malt, sherry and sweet oak. Full and rich with toffee and nuts. Again we were surprised with the pairing. The cheese brought out more spice in the Scottish Leader Original. The whisky made the Smokey Joe cheese more milky and creamy and both enhanced the smokey flavour. We gave this Scottish Leader Original and Milwaukee Smokey Joe cheese pairing a Rating: 3/5. The nice thing about both these whisky cheese pairings –they are affordable.
Johnnie Walker Black & Milwaukee Smokey Joe cheese pairing
The Johnnie Walker Black is one of our better-loved whiskies. Tasting notes for this blended Scottish whisky include notes of winter spice and treacle, hints of white pepper and a little citrus. The palate is quite rich and full. There are notes of wood smoke and dry spice, hints of cereal with creamy toffee and a distinct herbal note. What a lovely dram. The whisky softens the smoke flavor of the Smoky Joe cheese. The cheese however, does very little to enhance the whisky. Not a bad pairing, but not one I would try again. We gave this Johnnie Walker Black and Smokey Joe Cheese a Rating: 2.5/5.
We also tried this Milwaukee Smokey Joe cheese with a Glendronach 12 yo and a Benromach 10 yo. These pairings did not work at all and we gave it a Rating 2/5 and 1/5 respectively. After the tasting, I made a toasted cheese and bacon sandwich with the Milwaukee Smokey Joe and paired it with some more of the Black Bottle whisky. It certainly left a smile on my face.
Also Read: Blue Tower Cheese and Whisky pairing