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    Wiki: Aroma Defects

    While there are 1000′s of different cheeses, the variation of their ingredients can result in 100′s of thoushand of different cheese aromas. In addition, an aroma that is intentional and appealing to one, may not be too another. That said, this Wiki Article discusses the common aroma defects in cheeses, their descriptions, causes, and solutions organized by aroma type.

    Ammonia

    Description

    • Cheese smells of ammonia, often call ammoniated.
    • While undesirable to many, it is often preferred by Camembert & Brie aficionados.
    • Ammonia is often contained in household cleaning products such as window (i.e. in Windex product), drain, toilet, and bathroom cleaners.

    Causes

    • Common in soft cheeses which are over-ripe, past “a point”.
    • Ripening cheese has little air circulation, for example in ripening box.

    Solutions

    • Consume cheese before ammonia becomes stronger, normally the ammonia is only a smell and not a taste in the cheese.
    • If in enclosed container, vent to reduce build up of ammonia smell.

    Rancid

    Description

    • Cheese has rancid smell like old rancid cooking oil or old rancid butter that has been left too long in a warm environment.

    Causes

    • Cheese has been aged in too warm an environment causing oil form within the cheese to liquidize and leak out and which has subsequently gone rancid.
    • Oil used to coat cheese rinds has gone rancid either as aged at too warm an environment or for too long for the type of oil used or because the oil before used was already partly rancid.

    Solutions

    • For current cheese, none.
    • For future makes, if oily rind, correct aging environment temperature, if oil used on rinds has gone bad, correct aging temperature, or select oil type to match aging duration, or ensure oil used was fresh, not old and has been properly stored.

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