Meet Our Makers: Vulto Creamery

It started with an apartment in Brooklyn. That, maybe, is not how you’d expect the story of a creamery to begin, but Jos Vulton is not exactly what you’d expect when you picture a cheesemaker. Following the siren call of the craft, he left his career as a metal worker and began making cheese in his kitchen. When faced with the task of aging that cheese, he turned to his only option in the wilds of Brooklyn – he aged them beneath the sidewalk outside. After a few years of testing and tasting, he opened a real-deal operation in New York’s western Catskill mountains, in a small little hamlet known as Walton. This has been the idyllic setup, far from the humble kitchens of his cheese’s youth – he sources milk from his neighbor’s herd of Holstein and Jersey cows, imparting his raw milk cheeses with the terroir of the Catskills. 

We at Murray’s are unbelievably thrilled every time we get to taste a bit of what Vulto has to offer (and since they’re always in our cases, that’s fairly often). Take a look at the sampling of Vulto Creamery’s delectable raw cow’s milk cheeses and feel free to indulge.

Hamden

Named for the town just a hop, skip, and a jump from Vulto Creamery, Hamden originated from its stinky sibling, Ouleout. Legend has it that Jos decided to let a few wheels just go wild, letting their earthy, crunchy rinds develop naturally. We like to think of it as Tomme de Savoie’s Hudson Valley soul sister – if features notes of fresh spring milk, freshly cut grass, and toasty hay. If you’re picking up a chunk in our store (and we think you definitely should), don’t forget to grab a loaf of crusty baguette, a few dried cherries, and maybe a couple of cans of a good farmhouse ale. You’ll thank us.

Ouleout

Say it with me: OOH-LEE-OUW. The name is actually a double-meaning. For one, it comes from the Algonquin word that means “a continuing voice” – and trust us, it comes with a flavor that definitely lasts. It’s also the name of a creek that flows through Delaware County, right past Vulto’s creamery. Ouleout is the perfect name, in our opinion, since this creamy raw milk beauty is washed to stinky perfection. Made in the same vein as Ardrahan and Munster, the smell of this guy certainly isn’t misleading – while the taste isn’t as pungent, it is definitely briny, with strong notes of roasted coffee. Not for the faint of heart, but we love all cheeses, stink and all.

Miranda

We love a sweet story when it comes to cheese (even though this definitely qualifies as ‘savory’). In a tribute to his wife, who always wanted to have a cheese named after her, Jos Vulto named Miranda after his late wife. Miranda reminds us of a classy lady, casually dining in a speakeasy. That fact has a lot to do with Miranda’s weekly wash in a locally produced Absinthe called Meadow of Love – the orange rind from this brings lush herbaceousness to the button-like wheel. The bright yellow, creamy interior is lightly bubbled, but imparts a big, meaty flavor that reminds us of a French Dip sandwich, au jus included. Pack on the meatiness with a few slices of speck and some tangy, garlicky pickles.

And The Nomi-Cheese Are…

So begins this year’s award season. We’ve been spending a lot of time thinking about our favorites, both in television, film, and cheese. If we were handing out the awards on Sunday, this is who we would choose to award those Golden (Cheese) Globes. In preparation, be sure to pair these cheeses with your Golden Globe viewing party. 

Best Drama

Manchego By The Sea

If you’re looking for a cheese to pair with this seaside film, we have to recommend an aged Manchego. Its salty, crumbly paste is going to pair great with the sea salted air (or your salty tears). While we can’t promise that this cheese will bring your family closer together, or solve your failed marriage, we can promise that it’s delicious.

Best Musical or Comedy

La La Tur

Much like this highly fanciful modern-day musical, La Tur is simply decadent. While Ryan Gosling and Emma Stone are busy balancing chasing their dreams and falling in love, we ask – why not have both? This creamy, fluffy cheese is like a dream come true with the kind of champagne they’re serving at those parties in Hollywood, and you better believe we’re in love.

Best Animated Film

MoAnnelies

Annelies may come from the Alps, not by the sea, but these two have more in common than you’d think. Much like Moana was chosen by the sea to travel across the oceans, Annelies has traveled over mountains and across the sea to get to Murray’s caves. The result is an inspiring flavor that has a flavor that tastes distinctly where it comes from (hazelnuts, alpine grasses, butterscotch). It’s a taste that you’ll be thanking us for. And as Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson says, You’re Welcome.

Best Television Drama

West(Loop)world

We might not know what is real and what isn’t when it comes to Westworld, but we do know one thing: West Loop Salumi is the real deal. With the rustic and traditional style that would have made it right at home in Westworld, Chicago’s Salumiere is as masterful in charcuterie as Anthony Hopkins is as making lifelike robots. We also think their savory, porky sticks are just about as addictive as this winning show.

Best Television Musical or Comedy

Mozzarella in the Jungle

We’ve seen this show win before, and Mozzarella is no different. Everyone loves these two – they go well with everything (comedy, drama, pizza) and pretty much everyone loves them. Whether you’re a free young spirit like Rodrigo, or a veteran traditionalist like Thomas, you can style mozzarella any way that you like – it’s a flexible, versatile cheese that can be snacked on, melted, or smoked. 

Best Limited Series

The Bite Of

The Night Of kept us guessing for nine episodes, and it still doesn’t seem like enough. Was Naz innocent? What really happened that night? We could have been satisfied watching this series all year – but limited series means limited. But you know what does keep us satisfied all year long? Our monthly clubs; delivering exciting new cheeses, meats, and pairings each month, it’s like a new episode dropping. I mean, we have to channel our anticipation somehow.

 

Have a Have-It-All Holiday with La Dolce Vita

You’re still looking for a gift for the holidays, huh? Don’t worry, we’ve got your back. Giving the gift of cheese is pretty much the in thing this year, and we’ve got a gift for pretty much everyone. It takes a single gift to transport your loved ones across oceans with some of the world’s greatest cheese. First stop? Italy.

It’s no secret that Italians do the whole eating thing right. Especially when it comes to cheese and meat. In this collection, we’ve hit up all the classic cheeses you think of when Italy is brought up – nutty Fontina, sheepy Pecorino, and spicy Gorgonzola, of course. Fontina Fontal is the epitome of the Italian table cheese, perfect for snacking with its supple paste and sweet, nutty flavor. You’ve most likely had Pecorino before – this Italian classic takes many shapes and forms, but the one we love most is hearty, crumbly, and full-flavored. The Gorgonzola is Mountain Gorgonzola, which is firm, sliceable, and delectably tangy with a hint of earthiness. Throw in the creamy La Tur, and it’s a full spread of all the amazing cheeses that Italy has to offer.

And then there’s the meat. The Italians invented salami – perfecting the process of preserving meat through salt, cool temperatures, and time. Murray’s own Sopressata is a classic salami derived from Italy’s most popular recipe, a combination of coarsely ground pork, garlic, salt, and freshly ground pepper. Our Speck is a smoked, full-muscle cut similar to silky Prosciutto, and aged in an herbed crust made up of juniper, thyme, sage, and fennel. Both pair well with the briny, peppery Castelvetrano Olives and crunchy Tarallini Crackers that accompany the gift pack.

It’s La Dolce Vita – the Sweet Life. And there’s nothing sweeter than giving cheese for the holidays. And receiving it, too!

2016 Murray’s Holiday Gift Guide

It’s that time of year again – time to think of the best, most thoughtful gift for the people in your life who mean something to you. And we have the perfect idea: Cheese! Murray’s has a number of fantastic gifts for practically everyone – from the cheese novice to the most discerning cheeselover, we bet you can find just the right kind of cheese to give this holiday season.

For the Cheese Novice

greatest-hits

So you want to introduce someone into the world of cheese, but have no clue where to start? We introduce Murray’s Greatest Hits. Think of this as the Hall of Fame for cheeses. A crash course, if you will. Taking some of the most famous cheeses from around the world, we pair them with cherry jam, Blenheim apricots, and olive oil crackers for a truly blissful intro into the cheese world.

For the Patriot

american-artisans

America is sometimes overlooked when it comes to cheese, but no longer! The American Artisans gift set is packed with the tastes of America – delicate creamy Vermont goat cheese, sassy California blues, and even Murray’s own Calabrese salami. Take your loved one on a flavor tour from one coast to the other to enjoy the majestic flavors of the good ol’ USA.

For the World Traveler

europass

Look no further than the Europass – a box full of everyone’s favorite European cheeses, delivered right to your giftee’s door. Everything from nutty Challerhocker from Switzerland, to delicately sweet French Persille de Rambouillet, and earthy Mrs. Quicke’s English Cheddar. The only thing that would make this group better is some caramely Ewephoria and creamy Taleggio, drizzled in decadent Serramel Oak Honey – oh wait, they get that too!

For the Cheeselover Who Has Everything

top-shelf

This is for your cheeselover with refined tastes, who has tried everything and wants only the best. We’re not saying they need to wear top hats and raise their pinkies as they dive into this gift, but it certainly wouldn’t hurt. The Top Shelf has it all – luxurious whipped honey, the best Jambon Iberico in the world, and beautiful aged blues will make the recipient of this luxe gift feel like royalty.

For the Meat Lover

the cure

Listen, we know not everyone loves cheese (we’re not sure why, exactly, but these things happen). But The Cure features no cheese – just meat, glorious meat! From Italian speck to Foie Gras to La Quercia’s spreadable Nduja, this box is packed with more varieties of carnivorous delight than your favorite meat-eater will know what to do with. 8 types of meat and a chutney, to boot!

But a gift from Murray’s doesn’t have to be just for the holiday season! With our Monthly Clubs, you can have meat and cheese delivered to your door each month. It’s the cheesy gift that keeps on giving!

The Epoisses-abilities are Limitless

There’s an apocryphal story starring this unassuming looking cheese – so pungent, so stinky when its scent is allowed to waft through the air, it was apparently banned from being transported on the Paris Metro. There’s no truth behind it, of course, as Epoisses has always been considered one of France’s greatest traditional cheeses. But it’s a great story nonetheless. AOC protected – meaning that only certain areas in France can make Epoisses as we know it – this washed rind cheese is practically French royalty. Even Napoleon was a fan of this rosy beauty. And you can find it at Murray’s!

This unctuous, pasteurized cow’s milk round comes far from Burgundy, France to join us in our shops, and we’re glad it made the trip. This cheese dates back to the sixteenth century, and was popular all the way up until the early 1900s, when over 300 farms were making Epoisses. But when the Second World War hit France, production almost completely died out. It was nearly a decade after the war had ended before Epoisses was made again. Now, the cheese is just as treasured as it once was, returned to its pre-war glory.

To get its signature funk, this cheese’s curd are carefully hand-ladled into forms, then dry salted. Taking a turn in a French cave, it is washed daily in a mixture of water and a pomace brandy, which helps to develop its signature funk and rosy orange complexion. Flavorwise, it adds bacony, woodsy notes to each delectable bite.

When Epoisses arrives stateside, it has only been aging for a month or so, and should be so gooey and creamy that you can practically slurp up the paste. This custardy bacon bomb even gets shipped in a little wooden box – all you have to do is simply slice into the wheel, then spoon onto a crusty baguette. Or just start dunking into the paste – you’ll be happy you did. A fairly photogenic cheese, right?