Last week I was returning from Barcelona and was set upon taking home some authentic Spanish cheese.
I decided on a strong manchego in the duty free store but the gentleman providing free samples (which I eagerly accepted) recommended the one positioned beside it. Believing it to be an even stronger variety I purchased some queso oveja al romero. It is very similar to manchego but has an exterior coated with rosemary.
Upon opening the packet, the potent smell of typical hard Mediterranean cheeses and rosemary was a definite olfactory delight. A subtle hint of the herb is present throughout the experience but it overwhelms the rind, should one choose to consume it (it is especially thin).
The best part about the taste is, I would say, the fantastic texture. Neither creamy nor hard it feels like a dense fudge (trust me, this is a good thing) and goes down the gullet just as easily. Were Thorntons ever to move into the cheese market, they should stock something like this.
The only downside is a slightly greasy feeling when handled although this is far less distracting in the mouth. Despite clearly being a mature cheese, it also isn’t quite as strong as I was promised but the depth in taste added by the rosemary makes up for this.
This is a cheese that is readily recommended and one that I would look for in England were I to think it easily available. In summary, the shopping list for my next trip to Spain already has one thing on it.