Before I start this post let me excuse myself with any Derbyshire-men or women, who might get the feeling I'm making fun of one of their traditional cheeses. OK I might make a joke about how it looks now and then but you'll see it's not ill meant. After all I'm sure you've got a great sense of humour :-).
The first time I saw Sage Derby Cheese in the UK I had a series of weird associations. I first thought "alien cheese", then "Kermit the frog" and ended thinking about lava lamps. The Green wax encasing the cheese and the also green veins might somehow explain how those thoughts came about :-). I have to admit the colour put me off quite a bit and just ignored this cheese when buying my cheese. Stupid, I know: I should have at least asked what it was. I would have found out that Sage Derby has been made since the 17th century, that the green veins come from spinach juice and that it once was a special cheese for Christmas and Harvest. Instead I thought it was some weird modern product made to appeal to sci-fi obsessed teenagers. Prejudice plus ignorance is always bound to turn onto yourself.
Some days ago I read by chance about this cheese again, found out about the sage and, by some weird chance, found some on offer at my local food store. I like cheese, sage too, so, what the heck, I had to try it. Although I'm sure there are finer version of Sage Derby, the one I got positively impressed me. I was afraid the sage would overpower the cheese, something that IMO happens too often in herb cheeses. Instead the taste had a very nice balance between sage notes and the creamy (but not bland) and at the same time slightly piquant taste of the cheese. A cheese I will
buy eat again.