Difference between: bleu cheese and Gorgonzola

Bleu (or blue) cheese and Gorgonzola – they’re quite similar. Gorgonzola is in fact a type of bleu cheese. 

Let’s find out the difference between the two.

a hunk of Gorgonzola cheese next to a pear

Definitions:

  • Blue cheese: a rich cheese in which the internal mold manifests itself in blue veins: made in France especially from sheep’s milk and elsewhere also from cow’s milk and goat’s milk.
  • Gorgonzola: a strongly flavored, semisoft variety of Italian milk cheese veined with mold.

As we can see, both cheeses consist of veins of mold. Appetizing, no?

Bleu cheese:

  • Includes a large class of cheeses treated with molds.
  • Was reportedly discovered by accident by a drunken cheesemaker.
  • Is made from cow’s, sheep’s, or goat’s milk and Penicillium glaucum mold.
  • Has blue to green to gray coloring of mold throughout the white.
  • Is aged for several months in a temperature-controlled environment, like a cave.
  • Has a stronger flavor than Gorgonzola.
  • Is it a bit more crumbly than Gorgonzola.

Gorgonzola cheese:

  • Was originally produced in Gorgonzola, Italy.
  • Is usually made from cow’s milk (can be made from goat’s) and Penicillium glaucum mold.
  • Has blue-green coloring of mold throughout the white.
  • Is aged for three to four months.
  • Has a milder flavor than bleu.
  • Is a bit softer than bleu.

The Food Substitutions Bible lists feta as a substitute for bleu cheese, noting that the flavor is not nearly as strong.

The Bible points out Gorgonzola, although typically mild, does have some more pungent, longer-aged varieties. Possible substitutions include Roquefort (less creamy), Stilton (less creamy), Dolcecatte (young Gorgonzola; milder), Cambozola (less complex flavor), and Saga (less complex flavor).

Oddly, our two featured cheeses are not named as possible substitutions for each other.

To recap: Bleu cheese includes many different types of cheeses, including Gorgonzola; both are aged cheeses made with mold.

Bleu cheese can be made from cow’s, sheep’s, or goat’s milk; has a sharper bite; and is more hard and crumbly. Gorgonzola is made primarily from cow’s milk, is milder in taste, and softer in texture.

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