April Cheese of the Month: Rogue Creamery Smokey Blue Cheese

Rogue Creamery

Rogue Creamery’s story begins in 1933 when an industrious entrepreneur from Portland, Oregon worked with the city of Central Point to create Southern Oregon’s first artisan creamery cooperative—the Rogue River Valley Co-op. Their aim was to support local dairy farmers struggling to make ends meet at the height of the Great Depression.

With its fertile soils, ample water, and rolling pastureland, the Rogue Valley proved a very successful location for raising dairy cows and making cheese. Soon, two “cheese giants” took notice, including legendary cheesemaker, Tom Vella. Together with his partner, he transformed the small cooperative into a thriving cheese factory. 

Read more on Rogue Creamery's website.

Smokey Blue Cheese

Rogue Creamery Smokey Blue Cheese

Meet the world’s first smoked blue cheese: Rogue Creamery Smokey Blue. Playfully inspired by Smokey Bear, this award-winning cheese is made from organic cow's milk and cold-smoked over Oregon hazelnuts for 16 hours. This process adds a sweet flavor of caramel and hazelnuts, which Rogue Creamery describes as candied bacon. Creamy, buttery, and crumbly in texture with a pale, buttery paste, and gorgeous blue-green veining.

Smokey Blue elevates even the simplest of foods - from burgers to deviled eggs. It’s also a unique addition to cheeseboard where it’s best served with nut brittle or preserved fruits. Pair with American whiskey and bigger red wines like Cabernet Franc and Zinfandel, as well as white wines exhibiting a hint of sweetness. 


Smokey Blue Cheese & Mushroom Tortellini

Creamy Blue Cheese and Mushroom Pasta

What you need


Bring a pot of salted water to a boil and prepare the tortellini according to directions

Meanwhile, melt butter in a 12-inch skillet over medium heat. Add in the onions and saute until tender. Add in the mushrooms, season with salt and pepper, continuing to saute until both the onions and mushrooms are softened. Add the garlic and cook until fragrant, about 1 to 2 minutes. 

Once the mushrooms begin to brown and caramelize, gradually add the chicken broth to the skillet. Make sure to deglaze the bottom of the pan by scraping up any browned bits. (They are loaded with flavor!) Turn the heat up to medium-high to bring the liquid to a boil before reducing it to a simmer.

Stir in the heavy cream, half of the blue cheese crumbles, Parmesan, and thyme, and mix until combined. Let the sauce simmer until it begins to thicken, about 15 minutes. Season with freshly ground black pepper and salt to taste.

Drain pasta and add to the blue cheese sauce, along with the parsley. Toss to combine.

Divide into serving bowls and sprinkle with remaining blue cheese crumbles. Enjoy!