Les Fromages de Chèvre

Chèvre, the very notion of white, soft, fresh goat’s milk cheese. Chèvre simply means goat in French and is a generic noun. If you keep reading you will notice there is a lot of goat milk cheeses, Chèvre, quite similar but with various names and most of all shapes. Most people probably connect Chèvre with the Loire valley in France. This type of cheese is, however, made a lot of other places in France as well, well worth exploring. As mentioned, Chèvre comes i many different shapes; pyramids, logs, cylindrical, bricks, wheel formed and so on. This type of cheese, or cheese family if you like, has a long history, way back to when the Arabs inhabited southern Europe, mainly the Iberia peninsula and Gallia. The texture varies from very soft and creamy to rather dry when it has matured for a few weeks. Distinct taste and smell of goat. hardly in doubt about what you’re eating.
To drink: The classic combination is Sauvignon blanc from the Loire. (On the terrace in the sunset.)

Banon

This unpasteurized Chèvre is from the northern Provence, more exact from the area around the town of Banon. AOP protection since 2003. Traditionally wrapped in leaves from the chestnut tree and tied up with raffia. Charming this wrapping, but without much practical significance these days. A cheese with traditions way back to the Gallo-Roman era. Not always a one-milk-cheese as cows milk or sheep milk may sometimes be blended in. Defines as a Chèvre though. Washed in local marc (eau-de-vie). Creamy texture. White color. The cheese is matured for a few weeks before release. Stored too long it will develop an intense goat aroma. Can be both far stead and industrial. Try one from the Masto family if you can get hold of it. More common is the industrial variety from Etoile.
To drink: A dry rosé from Provence or a sweet Jurançon. Both served well chilled.

Besace (de Savoie)

A dome formed chèvre from the Savoie. Sometimes called just Besace. Gets its form from hanging in muslin cloths to drain. A bit crumbly and a fine taste of herbs and flowers when fresh, but more mature flavours with age.
To drink: Local win: Chignin for instance.

Bonde de la Gatine

A small chèvre with the same form as a Crottin. From Poitou- Charantes, south-west Loire that is. A farmstead, fermier, cheese that is stored for at least four weeks before release. Beautiful rind that gives clear inducations of Geotrichum canidum. The paste is white with a compact and dryish texture. The taste is mild and gentle. A cheese anybody can like.
To drink: I would go for a Muscadet.

Bouton de Culotte

Possibly the smallest cheese in France, some will say that. 30 grammes, that’s it. From the Macôn area, i.e. very south of Burgundy. Fine, off-white rind with yellow spots. Very compact texture, almost semi firm. Sort of “al dente” so it’s demanding. Flavour is surprisingly mild. Bouton de Culotte means trouser button, inspired by both size and shape I suppose.
To drink: A white Macôn.

Bouygette

A raw and quite fresh goat milk cheese which often comes with a herb sprig; rosemary or a small fern leaf on top. Shaped like a kind of projectile, thicker in the middle, pointed at both ends. Great white bloomy rind. Matures in three weeks. Fine milk aroma, and taste of goat naturally, but also herbs such as rosemary and thyme. It comes from Tarn Garrigues du Midi. The area north of Toulouse.
To drink: White and dry. Feel free to try a local wine; Marsanne grape, it is seldom wrong. But Sancerre and the like from the Loire is also great company for this cheese.

Bûcheron

This goat’s milk cheese is ivory colored with white mold on the outside. Soft to semi-soft texture. Very mild when it is fresh but turns much sharper and drier with storage. Great cheese that pairs well with a nut or fruit bread.
To drink: White Loire wines or equivalent from other parts of the world if you’re going for copies.

Buchette de Manon

Soft fermier goat cheese from Provence. Unpasteurized and organic. Distinctive by its long thin tubular shape, resting on a small, thin piece of wood and has a sprig of Summer Savory on top. Produced by a small farm in Simian la Rotonde near Banon, ie in the mountains a bit up in Provence. Must NOT be confused with Buchette de Banon which is same style but a commercial variety. Can not be compared. Distinctive taste of goat and barnyard, but also hints of herbs, especially Summer Savory, naturally enough. A cheese for connoisseurs. Produced only in small quantities, distributed by Mons.
To drink: Cheese from Provence requires wines from Provence. Dry white, but also dry and fresh rosé will pair well.

Cabri Ariégeois

Soft unpasteurized goat’s milk cheese from the Loubieres area in Midi-Pyrénées, south-western France. Similar to Mont d’Or, with the exception of milk type and the area it comes from. Also comes in similar packaging. Wonderful wonderful goat taste. Washed rind. Matured a month before sale. Weak orange rind, pale white paste. Heat in oven at 180 degrees for 25 minutes and eat with a spoon. Good bread. Can be used as a mini-fondue.
To drink: A white and dry from the Languedoc-Roussillon region.

Cabri de Touraine

A goat milk cheese from the Touraine area in the western part of the Loire Valley. This is typical chèvre. Having a conical shape with a flat top. Unpasteurized and farm produced with milk only from the farmers own goats. Cabri is a generic term as there are many Cabris with subsequent name of origin such as Le Cabri-Bors or Le Cabri-Ariegeois to name two. Matured for four weeks. The rind is initially white getting more and more reddish as the cheese matures. It has a firm, slightly moist, but crumbly texture. Fresh taste of goat and the smell of barnyard is easy to find. Very good cheese.
To drink: Sauvignon blanc. This is also a Loire cheese which requires a white Loire wine. If you want a sweet touch in the wine I recommend a Chenin blanc. Personally I prefer a Sancerre or Pouilly-Fumé.

Cathare

Shaped like a large flat wheel. From the Carcassonne area in Languedoc, France. Unpasteurized. Aged for two to three weeks, but also sold quite fresh, at least locally. All cheeses carry the crest of its region. The “occitane” cross is inscribed onto the cheese top. The surface is covered in ash, mixed with a little mold after some time. Looks a bit grayish. Nice aroma and taste of goat, but also hints of nuts. Soft, pale rind, paste that quickly runs away if you leave it for a while on the kitchen counter. Very good Chèvre, also very decorative on any cheese board.
To drink: White and dry. Feel free to try a local one; Marsanne grape, it is rarely wrong.

Chabichou du Poitou

Chabichou du Poitou is a small goat milk cheese shaped like a pyramid and can be farmstead (fermier), co-operative or industrially made. Look for the fermier variety, it is the best. Best young, naturally more mature after about two months of storage, but also much drier. Chabichou du Poitou has a rich and sweet taste, goaty but with a nice acidity with balanced salt towards the end. With the fresh acidity and salty taste this is a great cheese for bright and balmy summer evenings. AOP since 1990.
To drink: Dry white Loire such as Sancerre or Pouilly-Fumé, even equivalent style from other regions.

Charollais

A Chèvre from Burgundy. Not to be confused with the cattle breed. A small cylindrical goat cheese with ash and fine mold growth around. Unpasteurized. Have AOC protection from as late as 2010. A relatively mild cheese that actually makes as much impression after you’ve swallowed it as when you have it in your mouth.
To drink: A not too complicated and heavy white burgundy. Avoid too much oak.

Chevrotin

Chevrotin’s cheese from unpasteurized milk and only farmstead (fermier). Produced in the mountains of the same areas as Reblochon and is very similar to this except that Chevrotin is from goat milk. Haute-Savoie, in other words. Goats and cows often graze together in this area and cheeses are often matured together in the cellars as well. Production is small, only around 85 tonnes per year. Smooth texture and complex flavors; so you should have quite dull taste buds not to get a real cheese experience. AOP since 2002.
To drink: Why not try a local wine from Savoie. Chautagne Mondeuse Vin de Savoie is an example of that. Alternatively, a dry white wine from the Marsanne and Roussanne grapes.

Clacbitou

From Saône et Loire in Burgundy and in many ways similar to Charollais. Sylinder formed. Best fresh which means after a couple of weeks if you want it with some acidity. Develops a natural rind but with minor performances of white mold and Geotrichum candidum as well. Rind is somewhat hard (for this type of cheese), but inside the paste is white and creamy melting once in your mouth. If matured for a few weeks extra it looses the acidity, but gains more volume. Fermier cheese but ofted matured by affineurs.
To drink: If it is fresh I recommend a Bourgogne Aligoté. The mature ones pair well with Chardonnay from Burgundy.

Clochette

A bell formed cheese, from which it has derived its name. From the Poitou-Charentes, which means the western part of the Loire valley. Size varies from 250 to 300 grams. More often than not a raw milk cheese from a farm dairy, but it also appears as an industrial cheese from thermised or pasteurized milk. The texture is rather dry, drier than many of the other chèvres there is around. Rind is a combination of bloomy and ash. After some maturing, blue spots develop a well, but not to worry. might turn pungent with age. Normal maturation is two weeks.
To drink: Try a Muscadet du Sèvre et Maine, preferably sur lie.

Le Cœur de Chèvre

A small (100 grams) heart formed chèvre from a small cooperative in Alvignac in the Quercy-province in the departement of Lot, Occitanie. That’s the same area as Rocamadour comes from.
To drink: Gaillac Premières Côtes dry white, which might be difficult to get hold of. Could be you have to go there for both the cheese and the wine. You won’t regret it, though, as the area is beautiful and gastronomically rich.

Cornilly

A chèvre from the Berry area of the Loire valley. Very common as a fresh cheese, Cornilly frais, but might also be matured for three to four weeks. A simple fermier cheese with a mild taste. Weighs 250 grams and is shaped like a small conic cylinder.
To drink: A Sauvignon blanc from Burgundy. Got to be a Saint-Bris then.

Cosne de Port Albry

A cheese from a farm dairy on the border between Burgundy and the Loire, Nièvre, next to Sancerre. Made by the family Melet. Conic form, very wide at the bottom, so the cheese weighs about a kilo. They also have a smaller version called Ptit Cosne (that’s how it is spelled). Rumours have it the small variety was shaped after the bra cup of the farmers wife, while the larger was shaped after his mistress’. Not todays makers that is, the cheese has been around for a while. Soft and even texture with ivory coloured paste. Natural dry rind with some Geotrichum candidum. Aroma is low key. Flavour expresses some bitter tones at the end and distinct umami. Herbs and grass. Slightly complex cheese. It should be mentioned that the cheese I have tasted is a mature version, so the fresh ones could be described differently. But it shows that a chèvre might well be matured for a couple of months. A very pleasant cheese.
To drink: The cheese is made next to Sancerre, so a mature one would be pretty obvious. We also had a bottle, magnum actually, of Agrapart Terroirs Champagne. They both paired very well.

Couronne Lochoise

A donut shaped chèvre from the Indre region in the department of Centre et Loire in France. Natural rind covered in ashes, but still with a little bit of molds. Farmstead cheese. Mild generous taste and a very creamy texture. matured for a full month. Even though it looks dirty on the outside it has a snow white paste.
To drink: A somewhat mature Sancerre. Locals may also prefer a red Touraine.

Crottin de Chavignol

This goat milk cheese is from the Berry area of the Loire. As with most of these cheeses it tastes quite different fresh and ripe. Becomes drier with storage. Most often it is eaten young when it is moist and has a more tender taste than the stored varieties. The taste is more elegant young but with distinct goat flavor. Also possible to get a blue stain mark when it is stored for more than a month. AOP since 1976.
To drink: Sancerre of course. So here is a classic example showing cheese and wine from the same area pair well.

Le Dôme de Vézelay

A domed raw milk chèvre from the Auxerrois region in Burgundy, France. White colour, creamy texture with the odd small spots of blue molds on the outside. Le Dôme de Vézelay has a subtle taste of goat, which will appeal to the connoisseurs.
To drink: Saint-Bris if you fancy a wine made from Sauvignon blanc. Otherwise, Bourgogne Aligoté pairs well and if you want to eat and drink as the locals try for instance a Cadette Bourgogne Vézelay.

Double Cabécou

Cabécou means small goat cheese in what is called Langue d’Oc, which is the ancient language of the south. And Double Cabécou is just that. From the southwest of France. Compact, yet soft and resilient off-white rind. Starting out mild in flavor but tells you at the back of the palate what it is made of. Good, but be aware that it may have a sharp aftertaste.
To drink: A local dry white wine, but also than light and fruity red wine; Gaillac for example.

Douillon

This is a fresh goat cheese from Burgundy. Was formerly a Charollais, but is slightly smaller. When Charollais was awarded an AOC it was also decided that it should become slightly bigger. Douillon is a somewhat smaller Charollais which has had to change its name because the farmer did not want to change his moulds. Also comes as a gorgeous frais version; which means fresh. Rindless, unpasteurized and wonderful fresh taste. Farmstead.
To drink: As for Charollais: a not so very complicated and heavy white burgundy. Avoid too much oak.

Fleur de Sologne

A small, flower shaped cheese from the Sologne area in the Loire valley. Rind with Geotrichum candidum and vegetable ash. Matured for 10 to 15 days and speaks goat, at least when it has matured a little longer that the initial 10 to 15 days. Very good in salads, but also very decorative on a cheese board.
To drink: Sancerre.

Feuille du Limousin

La Feuille du Limousin is a small farm made cheese, and only that, made by 12 farms in the Limousin area. As the names indicates it is formed like a leaf, chestnut leaf. Fairly young cheese, first made during the 1990s. The farmers united to create a new cheese to secure their livelihoods. The cheese bears a local token of quality. Matured for eight to twenty days and is sold in four varieties; fresh, semi fresh, semi dry and mature. I’ve only tasted the mature one. Thin, natural rind and some blue spots may develop as it matures. Paste has bright white colour, texture is even and creamy but dries out as it matures. You can taste the salt and a fine acidity, but it turns pungent with age.
To drink: An Alsace Riesling, preferably with som sugar. Alternatively a white Bandol. Dom. de Frégate Bandol 2011 for example.

Galet de (la) Chartreuse

A farm dairy cheese made by the Branche family situated along d’Aiguebelette lake in Savoie. The cheese has the form of a mini barrel. Starts out as a soft cheese naturally, but it is dried, so it ends up with a rather hard texture. However crumbly you may find it, in your mouth it’s all cream and butter. Pleasantly salty and quite heavenly flavour, when I think of it.
To drink: Try a local white. They’ve got fine acidity. Even though many of the locals wines from Savoie are more table wines than not, there are some gems. Nicolas Gonin is one of them. If you are a daring type, try a liqueur. The famous Chartreuse is made by the monks at La Grande Chartreuse monastery in the Chartreuse massif in Grenoble. Pairing produce from the same area seldom goes wrong. And if you can get your hands on a Chartreuse V.E.P. (Vieillissement Exceptionnellement Prolonge), hold to it.

Galette du Beaujolais

A slightly matured chèvre from the western beaujolais formed like a grindstone wheel, or a donut if you like. A rather pungent cheese. Bloomy rind. Compact, but creamy texture. Pefhaps a cheese for the more advanced chèvre lovers.
To drink: A white Beaujolas, I love the Ch. de Pizay Beaujolais Blanc.

Galletout

A soft and very likeable chèvre from Lot in the Occitanie, named after galet which means a small stone, somewhat like a pebble. Fresh with a fine acidity and a very thin rind. The paste looks a bit transparent, while texture is crumbly. Keep it on your kitchen counter for a while, and it turns more runny. A simple, but very likeable cheese.
To drink: A Côte de Gascogne.

Gour Noir

A small, oval cheese from the Limousin area in the middle of France. Rind is dominated by Geotrichum candidum and ash. The geotrichum makes an impact on the inside as well, as the paste is a little runny just under the rind. Soft and mild with typical dairy notes.
To drink: A Chenin blanc, whether it be from the Loire or South Africa. For something crispier; try a Sauvignon blanc from the Loire.

Lingot du Berger

Lingot is a very common name for small cheese and they could be either from goat’s or ewe’s milk. This one is made of goat’s milk, naturally and comes from Lot in Occitanie. Lingot means a bar, like in a gold bar. Berger means a shepherd. So this is the shepherd’s cheese. Traditional geotrichum candidum rind, with fine white paste inside, like most other chèvres. Texture is on the dry side. Mild and supple flavour, but tightens up with a bit of naturity. becoming quite sharp actually.
To drink: Even though it hails from the Occitanie (former Midi-Pyrénées and Rousillon-Languedoc) and there are more than enough local wines to pair it with, I recommend a Sancerre

Lingot des Causses

Another bar formed chèvre from the Lot area in Occitanie. farm dairy cheese made all year round. Milk from alpine goats. Medium sized cheese of about 170 grams. Typical Geotrichum candidum rind with caramel coloured spots. Silky texture and gentle flavours even though you can feel the salt and some sign of herbs. If you have a mature piece, the taste is markedly sharper. The big brother of the far more famous Rocamadour.
To drink: A local white, but you can also pull west in the direction of Bordeaux. Graves or the simpler Entre-deux-mers. If your cheese is mature, try a fresh and fruity red.

Mâconnais

A small chèvre from Mâcon in south west Burgundy, “born” to strengthen the fields bordering the vineyards, and letting goats do the job. 50 – 65 grams, cylinder and conic shape with ivory colored paste. Texture is firm but compact, and melts on the tongue. Rind is beige and slightly bloomy with sometimes blue spots. Minimum 10 days of maturation. Taste of sweet milk with smell of champignong and a touch of barnyard that strengthens with age. Best enjoyed fresh.
To drink: I would prefer a white local wine, Mâcon, that is. I notice some recommend a light Burgundy red, while the favorite seems to be a red from the Loire. May be I am conservative, but I favour a dry white.

Mistralou

Buchette de Manon’s brother this. A raw and organic farmstead chèvre, which, like its brother is stored a little longer than usual for Chèvre. From the small town of Simian la Rotonde near Banon, who are up in the Provence Alps. This cheese is for connoisseurs, which has to do with maturation. Much barnyard and goat farming. A small cheese, a few mouthfuls with its 55 grams. Wrapped in a chestnut leaf, so remove it before you eat it. Slightly pale yellow curd resulting from the storage. Some integrated Summer Savory in this, as apparently is this farm’s trademark.
To drink: Cheese from Provence requires wine from Provence. Dry white, but also dry and fresh rosé will pair well.

Mont Grêle

Mont Grêle is a small crottin shaped farm dairy cheese made by the Branche family, situated along the d’Aiguebelette lake in Savoie. Natural rind and quite firm and dry texture, like the two other chèvre they’re making at their farm. Matured for a long time for this style of cheese. Aromas of mushrooms, earth, moss and honey. Quite an array of aroma discoveries to make. Even though the texture is dry, it melts nicely once in your mouth.
To drink: Try a local white. They’ve got fine acidity. Even though many of the locals wines from Savoie are more table wines than not, there are some gems. Nicolas Gonin is one of them. If you are a daring type, try a liqueur. The famous Chartreuse is made by the monks at La Grande Chartreuse monastery in the Chartreuse massif in Grenoble. Pairing produce from the same area seldom goes wrong. And if you can get your hands on a Chartreuse V.E.P. (Vieillissement Exceptionnellement Prolonge), hold to it.

Montrachet

A farm dairy cheese from Burgundy, specificly from a farm in the village Saint-Gengoux-le-National, situated in the middle between Beaune and Mâcon. From raw goat’s milk, naturally and wrapped in a chestnut leaf and a nice band around as well. Sylinder shaped, about five cm high, but varies. Thin bloomy rind, but also blue spots and Geotrichum candidum. Fine acidity, soft texture but gives a grainy feel in your mouth.
To drink: Montrachet, what else? Well, if you thinks that is too hefty, go for a white Macôn.

Mothais Deux Sèvres

A fresh chèvre always made of raw goat’s milk, from the Deux Sevres area between Poitiers and la Rochelle. A neat little wheel og about 150 grams with a distict bloomy rind with aromas of forest floor and mushrooms. The cheese is partly wrapped in a chestnut or alternatively maple leaf. The cheese is subsequently also called Mothais sur feuille. A good cheese with a rather firm core, but runny just under the rind. You may sometimes detect a somewhat metallic flavour.
To drink: Muscadet from just a short distance further north.

Pélardon

A sweet little gem that is made in the Hérault, Gard, Lozère and Aude areas in South France (Occitanie). 60 grams. Up through history this cheese has had many different names, but for now it is Pélardon. AOC since 2000 and AOP since 2001. Typical farm dairy cheese, so you may experience slight variations depending on which farm dairy has made it. Minimum 11 days maturation, by which it has developed a fine cream coloured rind with sometimes some bloomy spots, including some blue ones. Even and creamy texture with flavours hinting about flowers and hazelnuts. The cheese can also be made at bigger dairies, but farm dairies will always put a label on the cheeses saying Fermier. look for that one, they are the best.
To drink:A white from the Languedoc-Roussillon will pair well, for instance a Picpoul de Pinet.

Le Pi de Lagorce

From Provence this smal crottin shaped farm dairy cheese. Bloomy rind with spots of blue mold. Paste is soft and creamy. Mostly lactic coagulation, but a small dash of rennet at the end. Dry salted, dried and turned many times the first day and night. A cheese made for matureation, some of them up to many months.
To drink: Drink locally, crisp white or rosé. If you come across a very mature cheese, try a Bandol.

Picadou

If you come across this one do try it. This is a Cabécou wrapped in walnut leaves and then sprinkled with plum brandy and added some crushed pepper. It will be stored in airtight containers. A very spicy cheese, also indicated by the name.
To drink: With a very spicy flavor including pepper I’d try a not too sweet Jurançon with this cheese.

Picodon

Geographically we’re now fairly deep into the southern Rhône valley but north of where the river’s delta begins to spread beyond where it is quite mountainous on both sides. The cheese Picodon as is made of unpasteurized goat’s milk has been AOP protected since 1983. Produced both on the east side (Drôme) and west (Ardèche) of the Rhône river. Picodon comes in several varieties and may be both fresh and stored in varying length. Picodon de l’Ardèche, Picodon de la Drôme, Picodon Carte Noire, Picodon de Crest (perhaps the greatest), Picodon the Dieulefit and Picodon du Dauphiné (which is extra mature) are all different varieties of the same cheese. Some even come soaked in olive oil with bay leaves. The cheese has a nice spicy character derived from what the goats eat.
To drink: White wine from the southern Rhone is well suited to this cheese.

Le Pisé du Lot

A Chèvre from the village Lachapelle Auzac in the department of Lot, about two and a half hours drive east of Bordeaux. Round cheese, 8 cm diameter, 1 cm high; weighs approx. 160 g. Matured for two weeks. Soft and supple. Definitely a goat’s cheese. Unpasteurized.
To drink: A white from Entre-deux-Mers.

Pont d’Yeu

Pont d’Yeu is a raw, fresh chèvre coming from the very charming island of Ile d’Yeu on the west coast of France and, so to speak, the Loire.Not far from St. Nazaire. farm dairy cheese covered in ash and salt. Not only made on the island, but also across the sound on the mainland. The milk absorbs a natural content of salt due to the influence of the sea. The paste is even and creamy, but turns grainy after some maturation.
To drink: Muscadet.

Pouligny St. Pierre

A goat’s milk cheese from Pouligny St. Pierre in the department of Indre in the Loire; Berry province. Unpasteurized goat’s milk with no exception. (Some Chèvre comes in pasteurized varieties to match the market). Can be farmstead (fermier) or industrial. Normally, about 55% of production is fermier. Fermier has a green tag (look for this) and the industrial has a red tag. The season for fermier variety is from late spring to autumn. So if you buy this midwinter it is an industrial variety. Matures a few weeks, but the best mature five weeks’ time, when they will become equipped with quite a hard and inedible rind. Great pronounced flavor. Taste gets more intense with storage, but never particularly sharp. Simply a great cheese. Relatively modest production, so grab on if you come upon it. Have AOC protection, the smallest and, among Chèvre, oldest; since 1972.
To drink: Several white wines will work well with this cheese. Sancerre, mature Chablis and village Burgundies too. Locally, they will probably drink Reuilly.

Racotin

Racotin is a small sylinder formed farm dairy cheese from the Saône et Loire area in Burgundy. made in the same way a its bigger brother Clacbitou. Natural rind with appearamce of Geotrichum candidum, and small blue spots if if has been allowed to mature for a while. Firm texyture if mature, otherwise fresh and creamy. matured for a minimum of two weeks.
To drink: Try a Chablis.

Rigotte de Condrieu

An unpasteurized fermier Chèvre from the Lyon region. The cheese is produced at about 15 farms in the area. Matures up to three weeks and develops a fine bloomy rind during that time. Very pale orange paste. Also available fresh. Then it is white and clean without the a developed rind. A delicate scent of acacia and honey as it goes through maturation. AOC since 2008, named after the village of Condrieu, probably considerably more famous for wine than the cheese.
To drink: Would not dream of drinking anything but Condrieu. I.e. a white wine from northern Rhône made ​​from Viognier grape.

Rocamadour

A gem of a fresh unpasteurized goat milk cheese from the Lot area in south-west France. Very small and round, delicate little cheese this, with its modest 35 grams. Usually eaten after only 12 to 15 days of maturing. It gets really intense with further maturation, almost like it burns in the mouth, so I prefer the fresh ones. The whole cheese is just a mouthful. Eat like a little toast, in salads or alone after the main course. The cheese has a thin but firm rind, just to eat, and the paste is usually a little runny and creamy. That’s why the one bite is best. Since it is the size it is, this is not a cheese for sharing, so buy more than one. A nice, light and likable Chèvre. AOP since 1996.
To drink: A fruity young wine, or as always: local white.

Rouelle

A cylindrical, flat cheese with a hole in the middle from Formagerie de Pic in Penne, a town in the Tarn area of Occitanie. Also in a smaller version whivh naturally bears the name La Petite Rouelle. Natural rind or covered in ash. Paste is bright white and homogeneous and delicate. Fine acidity, and a touch of hazel nuts.
To drink: A semi-sweet Vouvray.

RoveThyme

A small, fresh goat milk’s cheese from Provence. The name is a combination of the goat race; Rove and the fact that the cheese is decorated with a dried twig of thyme. Creamy texture and ivory colour. Distinct flavour of milk and thyme.
To drink: A fresh white, or a fresh Provencal rosé.

Sainte-Maure de Touraine

This is a farmstead goat milk cheese from Touraine in the Loire Valley. Like most fermier cheeses it is made from unpasteurized milk. Shaped as a small log. It is white and soft under a rind with salt and gray ash. Especially with this cheese is that it has a straw of rye through the middle, labeled with the cheese AOC seal and a number identifying the manufacturer. It has a fresh hay aroma and a mild lemon-like flavor. Must NOT be confused with Sainte-Maure which is industrially manufactured. AOC since 1990.
To drink: Like most French goat milk cheeses, Sauvignon blanc applies. But feel free to try something else white and dry, Riesling perhaps? After all, it is your cheese.

Selles sur Cher

Selles sur Cher comes from the Loire-et-Cher. Manufactured from unpasteurised goat’s milk and covered with ash. Matured for about three weeks, and gray mold develops during maturation. All of the cheese including the rind may very well be eaten. Recommended. This is a medium strong Chèvre with good acidity, taste of ash, some hints of cellar with round and nutty aftertaste. One of the oldest-chèvre cheeses that exist. AOC protection in 1975.
To drink: Here, often whenever there is talk of chèvre, the Sauvignon blanc from the Loire apply.

Signal

Signal is a small sylinder shaped farm dairy cheese made by the Branche family in Savoie. The name of the farm is Signal, by the way. This farm dairy also make two other chèvres; Mont Grêle og Galet de Chartreuse which you can find described further up on this page. Quite firm texture and lasting taste. A thin, but firm rind with some Geotrichum candidum. Even texture is compact, it turns creamy once in your mouth.
Å drikke til: Try a local wine from the Apremont area. Nicolas Gonin Altesse Isère will also pair very well.

Tarentais

A small Chèvre from the Tarentaise region of Savoie. Fun cheese with lots of flavor, some will probably say it has too much taste. The rind is a little too big so it has curled up, with hints of both white, yellow and blue mold in varying degrees depending on how mature it is. Quite compact and crumbly with a distinct nutty flavor. The cheese has a fairly short season from late spring till early fall. Make sure there is white mold over the yellow, then the cheese is best.
To drink: Drink local, I suggest Savoie Chignin. Fresh and rich in acidity. Matches the cheese well.

Le Trèfle

Le Trèfle is a farmstead cheese from the central Loire valley. Trèfle means clover and if you look carefully, you will notice it resembles a leaf clover. The rind is a blend of ash and some Geotrichum candidum. Texture is compact and even, but creamy. Good and mild cheese, with a pleasant acidity. The cheese is matured for 10 days and tightens up after some more maturing. This is a new cheese, as it was first made as recently as 2005.
To drink: As we are more or less in the same area, a Sancerre will make a fine pairing.

Trois cornes

A goat milk cheese from the southwestern part of Loire, the area around Deux-Sèvres, but also some times from the southern part of Charente Maritime. Perhaps the best area for chèvre style French cheeses. Well, it’s about taste and comfort, I believe. A long standing cheese this with different names up through de decades; Tricorne, Trébêche and Sableau. The present name stems from the French hat chapeau some say, but others have other opinions on the name. It happens this cheese is made from ewe’s milk, but it is rare, and it has happened cow’s milk has been blended in, suppose that has to do with supply of goat’s milk. A fresh cheese, mild with a clearly spoken acidity, but also taste of sweet goat milk. Creamy texture, melting once in your mouth.
To drink: A Muscadet.

Valençay

Valençay is a farm manufactured goat cheese from the town of the same name in the Loire. The Berry province. Valençay lies in a straight line south of Orleans. A known area of fresh goat cheese this. Shaped like a pyramid, but the top is cut off. The story has it that it was Napoleon who did this after an unsuccessful campaign to Egypt. So it be. From unpasteurized goat’s milk, but there are pasteurized varieties too, so make sure it is au lait cru. Best during spring and early summer but is produced all year round. Has a soft rind that has both mold and covered with a thin layer of ash. Matures for three weeks. Has a great goat flavor. Also hints of earth and with a good acidity. Well suited for grilling, for example, on a toast. AOP since 1998. Leran more about the cheese in this video.
To drink: Sauvignon blanc, preferably Sancerre or Fumé Puilly.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.