With the Cheese Grotto, we’ve made it our mission to combine the delicious traditions of European cheese with American convenience while uplifting some of the country’s top artisan cheesemakers. When we developed our first-ever our cheese tasting gift boxes and our cheese subscription boxes, we let the same principles guide us, looking for the best quality and craftsmanship in the U.S. first before going for imported goods.
That’s why we’ve got gift boxes with heritage breed country ham, dark chocolate, and tomato-white sultana chutney and why we’re including accompaniments like these in our cheese subscription. But the item that most resonates with the Cheese Grotto philosophy is something we could only dream of finding here 15 years ago: honeycomb infused with real black truffles—both produced and harvested in the American South.
The black Perigord truffles that lend their flavor to this sought-after condiment come from Chuckey, Tennessee, where some of the first high-quality Perigord truffles have been cultivated in the U.S. Typically foraged from in the wild in countries like France and Spain, they’ve resisted cultivation for centuries, but we’ve finally cracked the code.
The powerful, compelling flavors and aromas of these truffles—ranging from savory to earthy to garlicky to nutty to sweet—are captured and infused into edible honeycomb, harvested from beehives three states away in Savannah, Georgia. It’s just one of the high-quality, small-batch honeys we love to pair with cheese.
This isn’t just any honey, either. The busy bees that make this honey pollinate the star-thistle, a common weed you’ve probably seen growing in meadows and along roadsides. In the U.S., it’s considered an invasive plant, crowding out native species, but it does offer us one benefit.
The honey made from its nectar is some of the rarest and most sought-after, since it’s typically mixed in with other wildflowers. It’s also incredibly light in color, with a fruity, floral aroma and complex flavor that ranges from caramel to vegetable to spice.
Together, these ingredients carry on a millennia-old tradition of working with nature and human ingenuity to create and preserve enticing foods that express the unique flavors of where they were grown or made—just like the Cheese Grotto.
Combine this special honeycomb with Tennessee-grown truffles and experience a flavor journey unlike any other. We love to pair it with umami-rich, salt-forward cheeses—think rich blues and savory Cheddars—as well as earthy, mushroomy Brie-style cheeses. Try it in our cheese and truffle honey gift box or in our ultimate cheese tasting in a box with a plethora of other specialty accompaniments, available on our Cheese Gifts page.
What are your favorite “special occasion” accompaniments to pair with cheese? Let us know!
Photos by Grace Wilkey