Picos Blue Cheese, also known as Valdeon. The Picos de Europa, the peaks of Europe, are aptly named, towering over the wooded foothills and tiny villages, therefore providing a safe-haven for the millions of tiny blue spores that lurk in the limestone caves.
Picos de Europa, is a Spanish blue cheese produced in Valdeon Valley of Castile-Leon region of northwestern Spain. Made all year round with cow and goat’s milk the cheese has very dense blue veining. Since leaf wrapping is not allowed these days, it comes wrapped in leaf printed aluminium foil. It’s been awarded a status of Protected Geographical Indication (PGI) to regulate the production, processing and preparation of the cheese. In 2005, the Ministry of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food granted Picos Blue Cheese an award for best Blue Veined Spanish Cheese. It also got a Silver Award at the World Cheese Awards in 2015.
The pate of Valdeon has a soft, granular texture and pale yellow colour. It is full of small cavities filled with blue moulds. The cheese is covered by a coarse, inconsistent rind in dark grey shades with little red marks. Valdeon is very strong and spicy in taste similar to Roquefort. A powerful smelling cheese, Valendon greasy, buttery paste is perfect for preparing any kind of blue cheese sauce. In conclusion, the rich smell of the cheese makes a good company with fresh fruit and strong red wine or sherry.