We’ve been carrying Prima Donna since our opening day in 2003, and it’s one of our most popular cheeses. Contrary to what staff might tell you, the cheese was not named after Jeff.
Prima Donna is a Gouda-style cheese, but with an added savory component that comes from the addition of a Parmesan cheese culture to the milk, resulting in a versatile cheese that slices, melts, grates, and pairs perfectly with fruit, meats, and other foods.
This Dutch cow’s milk cheese smells like butterscotch candy and tastes not unlike a salted caramel. Made with pasteurized milk and aged for about 16 months, it develops a deep golden interior dotted with white protein crystals, with concentrated flavors similar to aged Goudas. The white crystals are tyrosine – amino acid chains that develop as a cheese ages. These fine white crystals tend to collect especially in the holes of the cheese.
In 2014 and 2015 this Prima Donna received a Gold Award for ‘Best European Cheese’ at the Global Cheese Awards in the UK.
Serve Prima Donna with red wines such as a Cabernet Sauvignon, Pinot Noir, Syrah, or Zinfandel, or a nutty fortified wine like a Madeira, dry-aged Sherry, or a Tawny Port.
N.B., Williams-Sonoma is selling a 25lb wheel of Prima Donna for $700. We can beat that price by over $250, and we’ll sell it to you in smaller amounts, down to a quarter of a pound for a lot less than that!