Once again, I went to the cheese display with no plans other than to find something I had not tried before, and this was the first one that caught my attention.
On the plus side, it's extremely flavorful and easy to slice without crumbling.
On the minus side, I tasted all parmesan and no gouda. It's not much of a melange, with the parmesan being so dominant.
Nina and I had this on TJ's melba rounds. Predictably, given the extreme blandness of those crackers, there was no blending of flavors, and we might just have well eaten the cheese by itself. I'm not sure how well it would pair with bolder, more interesting crackers; I worry that the parmesan flavor is so strong that it wouldn't play well with others, so to speak.
Will I buy it again?
Probably not. It's not bad, but there are many other cheeses I like better--including plain gouda. Besides, I have enough parmesan in my life already.
This version does no favors either to parmesan or to gouda. In fact, in general I think Trader Joe's hybrid cheese breeding program is a colossal mistake. There's a reason we have different types of cheese, it's because different flavors are good when they're different. Not when they're mooshed together either in your mouth or in the cheese itself.
Stop your evil artificial genetic cheese modifications TJ's! No good can come of it!