Vella Cheese is a long time cheesemaker from Sonoma. They started back in 1931 when local dairymen came together and wanted Mr Vella to open a place for them to ship their milk locally, to make cheese. We went and tried these cheeses and they’re phenomenal. We can’t get enough, so we decided to carry them for our customers to try, too!
Vella has many varieties of cheese, and here are the flavors of our favorites*, each packed at roughly a half pound:
When our Mezzo Secco cheese is aged longer—a full two years up to four years—it becomes especially golden and delicious, so we named it Oro Secco. Mezzo Secco represents our attempt to return to the 1930s, when this cheese became prominent thanks to it being hearty enough to be stored outside the main compartment of the “ice boxes” that came before modern refrigeration.
In 1999, Vella revived Mezzo Secco, and were awarded a silver medal in the US Cheese Championships.
Dry Monterey Jack Cheese:
This is one of Vella’s Best Sellers and with one taste anyone will understand why. Made like fresh Monterey Jack and further aged for another seven to ten months. Firm, pale yellow with a sweet nutty flavor. This cheese is great for grating, shredding, slicing, cooking or just plain eating.
Sharp White Cheddar:
Our Sharp White Cheddar is aged for an estimated two years and has a complex sharp flavor that lingers in your mouth. We’ve recaptured the way this cheese should taste.
Vella High Moisture Monterey Jack:
There is no richer or more delicious Monterey Jack anywhere. Its rich, buttery, creamy texture and taste leaves a clean fresh flavor in your mouth. At room temperature, it’s as soft and creamy as a fine Brie, but far more economical. The imprint of the muslin cloth on the back of the wheel shows that it has been rolled and shaped by hand (no machine-made cheese can ever match this level of character and individuality).
Our Garlic Jack is enriched with California grown garlic.
The red and green jalapeño peppers are freshly delivered to us from our special source in New Mexico.
This spicy cheese is seasoned with habañero chilies. It has more initial “kick” than the jalapeno jack but doesn’t leave a lasting burning feeling in the mouth.
The creamy sweetness of our Pesto Jack should not be missed. The result is a cheese suffused with piquant and delicate flavors. Great for spiced grilled cheese sandwiches. Wonderful alone, with crackers or grated on your favorite pasta dish!
We grow our own fresh rosemary gives this cheese a delightful flavor.
This soft, buttery, slightly-ripened cheese from the Piedmont region of the Italian Peninsula was originally made on the farm or in small local factories. As the factories became larger, this cheese was available in lesser amounts because it takes a great deal of hand labor and care. Vella was the first US cheesemaker to have made Toma. This cheese is silky, buttery, and creamy sweet with Asiago undertones. It would pair well with a bold Cabernet Sauvignon or an everyday Chianti since it is an Italian style cheese.
Italian Style Table Cheese:
Its subtle flavor and semi-firm texture represents the finest products of the California cheese-makers’ art. Excellent as a dessert cheese with fruits, a table cheese for snacks, or an ingredient in all cheese recipes. Definitely recommended for use in Latin dishes. The California version of Fontina.
This Italian type cheese has been made by Vella Cheese Company as a dry grating cheese. However, we decided to make a younger, sweeter version for slicing and fresher use. By experimenting with various cultures, they arrived at this very special version.
*My personal favorites from Vella are Oro Secco, Toma, Italian Style Table Cheese, and Romanello Dolce. I absolutely could not choose just one.