It’s not a name that comes tripping off the tongue, but Grazalema Payoyo is a
cheese worth remembering. I fell in love with it instantly, so deftly does it
blend the tang of goat’s milk with the sweetness of sheep’s milk. But how to
recall such a peculiar name?
It helps to learn that Payoyo is a breed of goats, much prized in a corner of
Andalusia, in southern Spain. Grazalema is a village name and the name of the
Andalusian nature preserve where the dairy resides. The dairy’s actual address
is a burg called Villaluenga del Rosario, population 481.
As much as I endorse the locavore movement, I can’t help but think it’s a
wonderful thing that we can experience a cheese made by people in this tiny
outpost in a remote part of Spain. Produced by a 14-member cooperative begun in
1997, Grazalema Payoyo tastes like it is made by people who have cheesemaking in
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