I like cheese so much, I'd marry it if I could. In fact, I tried to get as close as possible by inquiring about having my wedding at Murray's Cheese Bar in New York City. (It didn't work out, but I had my shower there instead as a compromise!) I've never met a single cheese that I don't like. Yak cheese? Sure! Stinky, gooey cheese? Bring it on — and make it even stinkier and gooier, if possible!
So when we decided to run a string cheese taste test earlier this year, I was crushed that I didn't have enough time to write it myself — especially because I already knew which one I'd pick.
I assigned the story to one of my most trusted writers, Danielle Centoni. She's a food writer, editor, recipe developer, cookbook author, and a James Beard award winner, so I trusted that she'd pick the correct winner — even though I gave her little to no guidance. (I didn't want to lead the witness!) "Gather your kids to eat a bunch of string cheese and tell us which brand you liked best," my instructions read.
She nailed it, picking the only brand I buy — and she spared me from having to eat and review a bunch of string cheeses I knew I wasn't going to like nearly as much.
Buy: Frigo String Cheese, $5 for 12
Danielle and her family picked Frigo string cheese, which was the right answer!
"This one was my favorite for its classic flavor and texture. It's creamy, but still a bit bouncy, as you expect from part-skim mozzarella. The flavor is rich and cheesy but a little tart, with the salt and acidity in perfect balance. The only downside is that when you peel off the strings, some end up like thin annoying hairs, which others may love. (I like my string cheese to peel off in thick shreds.)"
I agree with her 100 percent on all of these points. I'm sure we've all had a plastic-y string cheese (or three) that kinda tastes like, well, nothing. Frigo string cheese actually tastes like cheese! Like mozzarella that you could totally shred up and sprinkle over a mini pizza or a bowl of pasta.
As for the stringiness that Danielle complains about, she's wrong. (Although I love that despite the complaint, this cheese still wins for her — that just goes to show how amazing the flavor is!) See, string cheese is supposed to be stringy. Otherwise, you're just eating cheese or a cheese stick. (Note: Cheese sticks do exist but they're usually some sort of cheddar or Colby and are not supposed to be stringy!)
This cheese even won a spot in our list of 100 must-have groceries!
When I'm eating a string cheese, I want to take my time with it, pulling apart as many strings as possible. (I can seriously make a string cheese last through an entire episode of Barefoot Contessa.) Somehow other top brands — you know the ones I speak of — don't really pull apart all that well. The cheese either breaks before you can get a full-length piece, or it comes apart perfectly clean — without a single little string or strand dangling.
Frigo on the other hand, Frigo has lots of little and big pieces. And big flavor.
What do you think? What's your favorite brand of string cheese?