‘Gorgonzola’ vs ‘Blue Cheese’: What’s the difference? This article will take us out of the English classroom and into the kitchen, offering you a chance to learn vocabulary from a new area. Don’t worry, though — we won’t make it too cheesy.
Are you in a rush? Here’s a quick look at what’s to come:
Interestingly, the difference between these two terms is more of a big picture vs smaller picture distinction rather than two totally separate entities. It turns out that ‘Blue Cheese’ is a category under which ‘Gorgonzola’ falls.
What makes ‘Gorgonzola’ its own entity is that it’s softer and milder than other ‘Blue Cheeses.’ Also, note that all cheeses have their own origin stories and rich cultural history, so we are not implying that ‘Gorgonzola’ is more special than other ‘Blue Cheeses.’ We simply want to clarify the difference between the two since they are often confused.
One way to remember that ‘Gorgonzola’ is different is to use clues within the word itself to keep it separate.
Now that we have a basic understanding of these two terms let’s take a closer look individually at ‘Gorgonzola’ vs ‘Blue Cheese’.
The word ‘Gorgonzola’ comes from the town of the same name, Gorgonzola, in northern Italy, where the cheese is from.
Local legends say that the cheese was made by accident when a young cheesemaker got distracted by his lover and accidentally left the cheese curds draining overnight, which made a nice home for some mold spores. To hide his mistake, he mixed the moldy batch with a good one, and after pressing and aging the cheese, he discovered the tasty blue streaks.
‘Gorgonzola’ is known for its earthy flavor due to the aging process, and its cow's milk origin also gives it a salty taste. This type of cheese is typically aged for three to four months, giving it a creamier texture than other blue cheeses.
According to Oxford Languages, ‘Blue Cheese’ is a noun that means:
As expected, the term ‘Blue Cheese’ comes from the blue-colored veins of mold that run through this group of cheeses. ‘Blue Cheese’ is specifically made with Penicillium, the type of mold that’s responsible for its color, smell, and unique flavor. Fear not, though; Penicillium is not a harmful mold and is, therefore, safe to make food with.
The first-ever ‘Blue Cheese’ was also said to have been made by accident, when a distracted shepherd forgot his lunch of cheese and bread inside a cave in Roquefort, France, in the 7th century. Oxygen got into the cheese, and when the shepherd found it a few months later, it had turned blue yet retained its flavor.
Here is a list of the most popular ‘Blue Cheeses’ and what to pair them with:
Since you may not only encounter these foods in recipes but in grocery stores as well, we want to make sure you can discuss them in person. Follow the guides below to learn how these words are properly pronounced so you feel confident saying them aloud.
Use this phonetic spelling of ‘Gorgonzola’ as a guide:
Use this phonetic spelling of ‘Blue Cheese’ as a guide:
The final step to mastering new vocabulary is feeling comfortable using it on your own terms. Refer to the sample sentences below to get an idea of the different contexts in which you may see ‘Gorgonzola’ vs ‘Blue Cheese’, then practice using them on your own.
Learning new vocabulary can be a great way to connect with other cultures and get you some culinary expertise. Just remember that sometimes, learning words can be a matter of learning specifics versus categorical information, and it’s important to separate the two.
Need a recap? Here’s a little review of what we learned:
Want to learn more about kitchen-related vocabulary? Be sure to check out other confusing word articles that give you a peek into how our words work in the real world. You can learn a lot about different cultures and culinary practices just by learning new words.