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A little less than a happy high
An afternoon with the stinky cheese man
The "Summer Oddities" lineup at yesterday's tasting at Formaggio Kitchen...

Truffe de Valensole – Haute Provence, France (goat, ash coated and aged): Spicy, almost peppery, but not so much as to overpower the goat tang; flavor lingered, but not so much as to be unpleasant.
Wine: Mas Sainte Berther – Les Baux de Provence, France (Grenache, Mourvedre)

Tetoun – Haute Provence, France (goat): We were told that this went well with strong herbs like rosemary. I suppose that's good because both samples I tried were from the bottom of the cheese, which is coated in strong herbs like rosemary. Strong goaty flavor, but I have to confess not getting a clear read because of the bitter herbs.
Wine: Mas de Gourgonnier – Les Baux de Provence, France (Blend)

Ladotiri – Heraklion, Crete (oil cured sheep & goat milk): I was expecting something akin to parmesan, but it was a great deal milder, reminding me almost of the cheese bread that my aunt used to make when I was a kid. Loved the flavor of the olive oil coming through.
Wine: Achanes, Lidakis – Archanes, Crete (Kotsifali, Mandilaria)

Upecorinu – Corsica, France (sheep): The profile is a lot like Pecorino romano, but it lacked the bitter salt tang that usually makes me shy from the Italian unless I'm making a few specific pasta dishes. Robert said it was one of his favorite cheeses, and I think I understood.
Wine: Lyrakis Rosé – Iraklion, Crete (Kotsifali, Mandilaria)

Montgomery’s Farmhouse Cheddar – Somerset, England (cow): Though I like cheddar, I've not yet been moved by one. As cheddars go, this one's very good, but I'm not sure I can justify buying against the Pound when there are such solid offerings from the States. Color me jaded.
Wine: Chinon, Jean-Maurice Raffault – Loire Valley, France (Cabernet Franc)

Grain d’Orge – Jura, France (cow): True stinky cheese, with a scent that we were promised will linger on your fingertips for days. Aged camembert with an orange rind whose bitterness plays well with the sweet heart within. Not unlike livarot, and not for the faint of heart.
Wine: Collioure, Domaine Traginer – Banyuls, France (Grenache, Carignan, Mourvedre, Syrah)

Comté Marcel Petit "Le Fort" – Jura, France (cow, aged 18 months): I simply love Comté, and I keep finding new ways to enjoy it. In this case, the wine and cheese each made the other better. Robert had some great stories about buying this cheese and being judged "not ready" for some of the subtleties available in the style. I'm really looking forward to when they bring in wheels from some of the as yet unavailable fruitieres.
Wine: Arbois Vin Jaune – Jura, France (Savagnin)

Bleu de Termignon – Haute Savoie, Fance (cow): This is the infamous "90 year old lady with 9 cows" cheese. It's really interesting, though nothing you'd expect from a blue. Picture something more akin to a really mild cheddar with occasional bursts of what almost tastes like wine tannins. The wine was great on the initial swish, giving the pairing almost a honey flavor, but the flavor of the cheese washed away very quickly.
Wine: Moscato d’Asti, Elio Perone – Piedmont, Italy (Moscato "Sourgal")

Hillman's Harvest Wheel - Colrain, Massachusetts (goat): This was served drenched in honey. While it was good, I almost feel like I want to taste the cheese again so I can judge it on its own merits.
9 comments or Leave a comment
(Deleted comment)
komos From: komos Date: August 16th, 2004 07:50 am (UTC) (Link)
Ah, but I've given all of the information you'd need to recreate the experience. ^_^

As an aside, for anyone who's not understood "cheese as dessert," the Comté Fort and the Vin Jaune should nicely alleviate any doubts.
prosicated From: prosicated Date: August 16th, 2004 08:49 am (UTC) (Link)
*drool* would that I could afford those things on my budget...
komos From: komos Date: August 16th, 2004 10:16 am (UTC) (Link)
I let myself have the odd luxury. This weekend was entirely off-budget, with Cirque and the tasting and various purchases related to Tax-Free! day, but I can scrimp elsewhere for a while to accommodate it.

Besides, the tasting was an educational expense... ;)
From: skygoodwill Date: August 16th, 2004 11:23 am (UTC) (Link)
Wow. Sounds like you are enjoying yourself! Is this true?
komos From: komos Date: August 16th, 2004 03:17 pm (UTC) (Link)
If I could say I was doing these things without anything hanging over me, sure. There have been times, though, where I've just been wondering what I'm hiding from and where I'm running.

Retail therapy isn't a real solid choice for me.
bbbsg From: bbbsg Date: August 16th, 2004 01:40 pm (UTC) (Link)
it is more of a tease knowing you've not yet written up Cirque than it is seeing the cheeses without description.
komos From: komos Date: August 16th, 2004 02:03 pm (UTC) (Link)
It will take some doing for a write-up on the cheeses, and I'm really at a loss for the wines.

As for Cirque, it's coming... just as soon as I craft something beyond "BENDY PEOPLE!" ^_^
From: uruz Date: August 16th, 2004 09:59 am (UTC) (Link)
You're so cheesy!

Sorry, but I just had to. :p
komos From: komos Date: August 16th, 2004 10:17 am (UTC) (Link)
I just had cheese to go with my wine.
9 comments or Leave a comment