Danish Cheeses

Denmark has a long tradition of making cheeses dating back to 3000 B.C. when records of acid cheese production by farmers have been noted. The Vikings were also instrumental in developing the cheese production process by making rennet cheese and introducing it to the locals. Then there were the monasteries that further improved the cheese making production.

The 1951 Stresa Convention in Italy was a milestone for dairy farms and cooperatives when it was decreed that Danish names can be used for local cheeses. Today there are a number of Danish cheese varieties that have come to be known not only in Denmark but all over the world as well. Here are some of the cheese varieties: Samsoe. It is known as the “national cheese of Denmark,” named after the island of Samso where it is said to have originated. It is made from cow’s milk and resembles the Swiss cheese in flavor and texture (it is said that the Samsoe was made by Swiss cheese makers who came to Denmark in the 19th century upon the invitation of the King of Denmark himself). Havarti/Cream Havarti.

One of Denmark’s most popular cheeses, the Havarti is a mild and soft cheese with small, irregularly-shaped holes. The creamier version is traditionally served for dessert paired with fruit or wine. Blue Castello. A mildly spicy and creamy cow’s milk cheese with thick bluish streaks, it was first developed in the 1960s by an agricultural marketing cooperative. It has a Brie-like texture and is used for a variety of dishes such as salads. Mycella. This is Denmark’s version of the Gorgonzola and is named after the blue-green mould that is added to the cow’s milk to make the cheese.

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