Amid the breathtaking landscapes of Cromínia, Goiás, emerges a gem of Brazilian gastronomy: the Golden Cheese, masterfully crafted by the Santa Bárbara Cheese Factory. Under the skillful hands of producer Paulo Matoso and his unwavering brothers, this cheese has not only won over local palates but has recently gained international recognition, being acclaimed as one of the best in the world at a prestigious competition in France.
The Golden Cheese clinched a bronze medal at the 2023 Le Mondial du Fromage et des Produits Laitiers in France, surpassing over 1,600 cheeses under the intense scrutiny of 200 judges, who evaluated appearance, aroma, taste, and harmony. Only two cheese factories from Goiás were acknowledged at this esteemed event, further heightening Santa Bárbara Cheese Factory’s position on the global stage.
Made from fresh milk supplied by pasture-raised cows, supplemented with silage and cattle feed, this semi-cured cheese undergoes maturation for up to 45 days in a special room. Such meticulous care results in a product that transcends the palate, offering an incredible sensory experience. Its golden-toned rind provides a unique aesthetic, with the color contrasting with a light filling, soft texture, and mild flavor, making it a perfect pair for wines or a special touch in the morning coffee ritual.
The internationally recognized Golden Cheese is just one of the pearls that the Santa Bárbara Cheese Factory has to offer. Moreover, the cheese factory presents a teeming variety of seven other types of cheeses, providing a gastronomic experience in parallel with the exuberance found in the Brazilian cheese scene.
The cheesemaker brothers are tireless in their pursuit of quality standards that transcend borders, implementing crucial processes for commercialization and adjusting infrastructure according to rigorous standards established through a strategic partnership with the National Rural Apprenticeship Service of Goiás (Senar Goiás), which plays a pivotal role in the improvement journey of this cheese. A rewarding effort that has transformed it into an authentic ambassador of Brazilian flavor overseas.
The Golden Cheese story is more than a culinary triumph; it is an irresistible invitation for cheese enthusiasts to explore and savor the sophistication and authentic taste of Brazilian cheese. This is a tribute to the skill and dedication of Brazilian producers, elevating national cuisine to world-class standards, a true celebration of excellence that transcends borders.
Photo: Fredox Carvalho / Sistema FAEG