June 11, 2024
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June 11, 2024
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Linking Northern and Central NJ, Bronx, Manhattan, Westchester and CT

Make Your Shavuot ‘Legend-dairy’ With Artisan Kosher Cheeses by The Cheese Guy

This spring, elevate your Shavuot meals—or year-round charcuterie boards—with artisanal, all-natural, kosher cheeses from The Cheese Guy.

Brent Delman, aka The Cheese Guy, is the king of kosher cheese. For the past three decades, he has been working with local family farms and small businesses to make small-batch artisanal cheeses.

In the early 1990s, he emerged as a trailblazer in the kosher cheese market, which at the time was limited to basic varieties like cheddar and American. Many cheeses were not certified kosher until Delman stepped in, revolutionizing the kosher dairy world. After spending some time in Israel and then receiving his MBA from George Washington University, he went on to enhance the specialty food industry by introducing robust and flavorful cheeses, like Craft Beer Cheddar and Habanero Pepper Jack.

Today, he carries about 60 varieties, from sliced cheese to fresh and soft. Some of his newest products include a two-year-aged grated parmesan shaker, available in two sizes: 3 ounces and 8 ounces. The full-bodied parmesan adds a savory bite to any pasta, pizza or soup, and has a longer shelf life, without preservatives, than most grated parmesans you would find at the grocery store.

For most of Delman’s products, it was the first time they broke ground in the kosher market. Today, The Cheese Guy has many new varieties available to the Orthodox community. Responding to customers’ requests for higher supervision, he introduced a new collection of “Super Kosher Cheeses,” which are chalav Yisrael. Among these offerings are a Tilsit (gruyere style) and a creamy Burrata from Italy.

The Cheese Guy takes customers on a journey of indulgence with imported cheeses, including two new French items. One of those is the Chagall (OU-D, chalav Yisrael kosher), a pungent and creamy French cheese rubbed with white wine, herbs and black pepper. Another is the Emmental (OU-D, chalav Yisrael kosher), a nutty, semi-hard Swiss cheese widely produced in France. It’s great for melting in fondues, grilled cheese sandwiches and quiches.

So, what makes a cheese kosher or not kosher? Rennet is one of the differentiating variables. It is a key component in some cheese-making processes. Rennet is a complex of enzymes that causes milk proteins to coagulate and separate the milk into solid curds. Rennet is used to produce artisan cheeses in the U.S. and most European cheeses, and is typically derived from the stomach lining of a calf or lamb that has not been slaughtered according to kosher dietary laws, rendering the cheese non-kosher.

To ensure cheese is kosher, it is ideal to use alternative rennet and other enzyme sources, such as microbial or vegetarian rennet. Another enzyme typically used to make specialty cheeses and generally derived from an animal is lipase. The Cheese Guy’s cheeses are made with microbial rennet and lipase, a technique that became commercially viable 25-30 years ago at a time when animal rennet reigned as the sole option on the market.

Delman’s mission to revolutionize the specialty kosher food market has taken him to dairy farms dotting Italian, Portuguese and Peruvian countrysides, ancient pastures of Israel, and domestic farmland from Wisconsin to Vermont. Inspired by his Midwestern, tight-knit upbringing, he supports small businesses through the concept of agripreneurship, partnering with mostly family-owned dairies.

Wherever you may be this Shavuot, The Cheese Guy’s offerings are sure to enhance your meals. In addition to cheese, he carries all the accoutrements required to complete a tasting experience, from seeded crackers to sour cornichons, and fresh pesto made with real parmesan.

You can purchase The Cheese Guy products at farmers markets in Westchester, Riverdale (Bronx), Long Island, Teaneck, and more; at supermarket chains, specialty stores and kosher markets like Whole Foods, Morton Williams, Shoprite, Uncle Giuseppe’s, Cedar Market, Seasons, Riverdale Kosher, Gourmet Glatt and others; or you can order them online at www.thecheeseguy.com.

For a free tasting experience, The Shabbat Drop, a newsletter of Jewish joy, is hosting a post-Shavuot tasting of The Cheese Guy’s products in Central Park on Sunday, June 16. Email [email protected] for more information.

Chag Shavuot Sameach!


Miranda Lapides is the Creative Marketing Manager at The Jewish Education Project. She is a freelance writer in New York City, and author of The Shabbat Drop, a newsletter of Jewish joy.

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