As noted in an earlier post, limburger cheese can be potent. The odor (or stench, or funk, or however you’d like to describe the experience) has come to define the stuff.
That’s a shame. It turns out that limburger is a far more subtle substance than we might expect, each little block living a productive lifecycle of about six months. Near the beginning of that cycle, limburger is surprisingly firm, almost chalky, more like a feta than a soft, surface ripened cheese. At 2-4 months, the bacteria in the cheese has broken down more of the proteins, making it softer and more fragrant. The cheese has begun to pick up some of its signature odor and texture, but it actually resembles a camembert or brie in its nutty mellowness. This is a cheese you could bring to a tasting party without fear of not being invited back.
Only in the last part of its useful life does limburger slump into a soft, almost undifferentiated mass of pungent power. This is the kind of stuff I tried on a sandwich at Baumgartner’s in Monroe, and it was actually pretty damn good when accompanied by raw onions.
It just didn’t make me very popular with the wife.