Manchego de La Mancha PDO
Manchego is my favourite cheese, if it’s possible to have a favourite cheese, depends where you are and what you’re drinking, lets say it’s in the top ten. Anyway Manchego is made from Ewe’s milk but not just any old sheep will do. Manchago traditionally comes from Don Quixote country, La Mancha and is made from unpasturised sheeps milk although on larger scale production they do use pasturised milk.
It can be matured from between 60 days to two years, pasteurised or raw milk can be used but if you really want to try the proper stuff go for raw. The taste is creamy, sometimes a bit gritty, hard, buttery and leaves that slight amonia after tastes which goes great with a good robust Rioja.
- Fresco – the fresh cheese is aged for only 2 weeks, with a rich but mild flavour. Produced in small quantities, it is rarely found outside Spain.
- Semicurado is a semi-firm cheese aged for three weeks to three months, milder than curado.
- Curado a semi-firm cheese aged for three to six months with a sweet and nutty flavor.
- Viejo, aged for one year is firm with a sharper flavour the longer it is aged and a rich deep pepperiness to it. It grates well, but can also be eaten sliced as tapas.
As usual I’m going to say it tastes better in Spain because it really does, hot sun, glass of wine, plate of cheese and ham, happy man. Spain is normally quite regional in the availability of it products but Manchago is everywhere.
Lots more info here including recipes. themanchegocheese
You can buy it in lots of shops and super markets but the choice is limited in the later. In Spain the average supermercado will have at least half a dozen types.