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Cheese Definitions

Cheese Definitions

Go to the Cheese Types page for more information on the categories of cheese
Go to the Cheese Varieties page for more information on specific cheeses

Choose a cheese term below to learn more:

Cheesemonger - A cheese salesperson who really knows his/her cheese!


Cheesehead -

  1. A person from the state of Wisconsin
  2. A fan of the Green Bay Packer football team - also known as a Packer Backer
  3. A foam hat carved into the shape of a cheese wedge and worn in support of the Green Bay Packers.

Check out a cheesehead gift:

Cheesehead Gift Basket
Cheesehead Gift Basket
Cheesehead Hat
Cheesehead Hat

Dutch-Type Cheese - Cheeses that are similar to those produced in the Netherlands. Edam and Gouda are considered 

Check out a Dutch-Type Cheese gift:

Marieke Gouda Award Winners Box

Gouda Cheese Gift Box

Imitation Pasteurized Process Cheese Spread - Similar to pasteurized process cheese, but the FDA requires it to be labeled differently since it has a significantly lower amount of butterfat.


Käse - The German word for cheese.


Longhorn - A cylinder of cheese that is 6-inches in diameter and 13-inches long, and is usually of the Colby or Colby Jack varieties.


Master Cheesemaker - The State of Wisconsin requires cheesemakers to be certified, but a few cheesemakers go above and beyong to become Master Cheesmakers.  The Wisconsin Master Cheesemaker program is modeled after similar programs in Europe, but Wisconsin is the only state to grant this distringuished honor. proudly offers award-winning cheeses from several Wisconsin Master Cheesemakers.


Mild (Young) Cheese - A term describing light cheese flavors that have yet to develop.

Check out a few of our mild (young) cheeses:

Wisconsin Cheddar Cheese - 1 lb Round
Wisconsin Cheddar Cheese - 1 lb Round
Organic Mild Cheddar Cheese Gift Box
Organic Mild Cheddar Cheese Gift Box

Natural - Refers to cheese made directly from milk.


Pasteurization - A process where cheesemakers heat milk to a certain temperature for a certain amount of time to destroy disease producing bacteria.


Pasteurized Process Cheese- A blend of natural cheeses that is shredded, mixed and cooked with an emulsifier salt which stops the cheese from ripening.


Pasteurized Process Cheese Food- Similar to Pasteurized Process cheese, but with less fat and more moisture.  Nonfat dry milk, or whey solids and water have been added so there is a lower percentage of real cheese in the finished product.

Here are two of many Pastueurized Process Cheese Food gifts available on


Pasteurized Process Cheese Spread / Cheese Spread - A type of Pasteurized Process cheese with a higher moisture content and lower milk fat content than Process Cheese Food.


Raw Milk - Milk that has not been pasteurized.

Some Wisconsinmade cheese gifts made with raw milk:
Marieke Gouda Cheese Variety Gift Box


Smoked Cheese - Cheese that has a smokey flavor either from the addition of liquid smoke or smoking over wood chips.

Check out a few of our smoked cheeses:

Smoked Mozzarella String Cheese
Smoked Mozzarella String Cheese
Wisconsin Cheddar Cheese Sampler Gift Box
Wisconsin Cheddar Cheese Sampler Gift Box

Swiss-Type Cheese - A cheese variety with characteristic holes inside as a result of gas being trapped and expanding during the curing process.  Baby Swiss has small, pea-sized holes, and Aged Swiss has larger holes.


Texture - The way a cheese feels when touched or tasted. Some words to describe texture include smooth, grainy, creamy, flaky, dense, crumbly, etc.


Variety - The name of a type of cheese used to identify it - Cheddar, Havarti, Gouda, etc.


Waxed Cheese - Before airtight shrink bags were invented, cheesemakers would wrap cheese in a cheesecloth then dip it in wax to preserve the cheese. Sometimes wax denotes the age of the cheese. With Cheddar for example, red wax indicates a medium cheddar and black wax indicates sharp cheddar.  Wax is also sometimes used to make fun cheese shapes, like the State of Wisconsin or a cow.

Check out our waxed cheese:

Wisconsin Cheese Cow Gift Box
Wisconsin Cheese Cow Gift Box
Bucky Badger Cheese & Sausage Snack Assortment

Wheel/Round Cheese - A circular style or form that is usually flat on the top and bottom.

Check out our wheel/round cheese:

Wisconsin Cheddar Cheese
Wisconsin Cheddar Cheese
Buttermilk Blue Cheese

Whey - The watery part of the milk that separates from the curds during the cheese making process.


Wisconsin State Brand/Wisconsin Grade A - Cheese carrying this title meets the State of Wisconsin's highest quality standards.


Source: All information is from the Wisconsin Milk Marketing Board.

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