Cheese Fest

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Archive for the ‘Soft’ Category

Flower Marie

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February 24th, 2019 Posted 7:07 pm

Soft fluffy cubes of delight made in the little village of Golden Cross, Sussex.

Flower Marie

Flower Marie

Each Flower Marie comes individually wrapped in waxed paper, like a pat of butter. Inside is a soft, bloomy, white mould covered cube of cheese.

The outside has no real smell, save a slight mushroominess one would expect from a mould rind cheese.

The pate is a pale yellow colour and smells faintly of grass and milk. The texture is soft, creamy and fudge like with a light, delicate fresh flavour, with hints of grass and the sweetness typical of a ewe’s milk cheese.

It’s an inoffensive and well behaved cheese suitable for offering to guests, whose taste in cheese may be uncertain. Delightfully pleasant.

Produced by  Golden Cross Cheese Ltd.

Purchased from Cheese Please, Lewes.

Reviewed by Nick and Olympia, 2012

(3.5/5)

Camembert au Calvados

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February 10th, 2019 Posted 7:14 pm

Just when you thought Camembert couldn’t get any more interesting…

Camembert au Calvados

Camembert au Calvados

…they cut off the rind, dip it in a Calvados and cider mixture, and then roll it in biscuit crumb. How wonderful! (Calvados is a brandy made from apples rather than grapes.)

The result is this rather crusty appearance with gooey, yumminess oozing out.

The crust smells very strongly of fermenting fruit with a slight disinfectant smell about it. The pate is typical of a Camembert, pale yellow and gooey with identical creamy, sticky texture.

The taste is an interesting mix of bitter, sweet and fruity with chemical, acetone notes, a bit like pear drops and cellulose varnish. There is also, unsurprisingly, a strong alcoholic element in this mix. The strong aftertaste has a pronounced metallic quality.

In closing, it is an interesting cheese. One to impress guests with, because of it’s unusual and unique nature. As a cheese to savour and enjoy, not so much. It is a little intense, best eaten in small quantities.

Purchased from: Champagne + Fromage, London

Reviewed by Nick & Olympia, 2017

(3.5/5)

Waterloo

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January 14th, 2018 Posted 6:28 pm

Just look at it! Oozy gorgeousness. It promises so much, but does it deliver?

Waterloo

Waterloo

It’s delicately cornflour dusted rind, and gooey golden pate oozing out.

This is an award winning cheese, consistently winning medals in the British Cheese Awards and twice winning a medal in the World Cheese Awards.

It has absolutely no smell, which, for some might signal concern.

The texture is divine: smooth, creamy and deliciously silky.

The flavour is salty and slightly bitter. Other than that, there is nothing. Most disappointing :-(

Lovely consistency, no real flavour. Despite it’s award winning status, we didn’t think much of it… a real shame.

Manufactured by Village Maid

Purchased from Cheese Please, Lewes

Reviewed by Nick & Olympia, 2013

(2/5)

Banon

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October 22nd, 2017 Posted 6:27 pm

Brown paper packages, tied up with string, this is one of our favourite things. Like the unassuming gift, wrapped in brown paper, that turns out to be something wonderful, Banon does not disappoint.

Banon

Banon

This little cheese is wrapped in chestnut leaves, tied up with raffia. Unwrapping reveals a soft, cream coloured cheese with a dusty white mould flecked dark spots from contact with the leaves.

The smell is slightly goaty, musty, with a smell of autumn leaves (unsurprisingly).

The pate is a greyish creamy white with a soft, smooth texture like liquid velvet.

This texture is just wonderful, that velvety pate is orally sensual. The flavour is delicately goaty, slightly nutty, with a slight bitterness. It has a seductive quality that is hard to describe, suffice to say it is ultimately satisfying and very moreish.

Purchased from Champagne + Fromage, London.

Reviewed by Nick & Olympia, 2017

(5/5)

Saint Félicien

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March 5th, 2017 Posted 7:58 pm

FREE! terracotta dish with every cheese!… well sometimes.

In France, it is traditional to sell Saint Félicien in shallow terracotta or eathenware dishes, although some manufacturers ship in shallow wooden boxes like a Camembert.

Saint Félicien

Saint Félicien

The reason for this is that the cheese is prone to becoming extremely runny and leaking whey. It also spoils easily if not allowed to breath. As a result, it doesn’t travel very well, which means it was quite difficult to get hold of.
That was until… some bright spark at Tesco’s, or maybe one of the producers, worked out how to ship it, cheaply in a plastic box.

Tesco Finest Saint Félicien du Dauphiné

Tesco Finest Saint Félicien du Dauphiné

…and it is really very good. This normally fragile cheese is now easily available throughout the UK, its lush creaminess preserved for all enjoy. Yay!

 

Saint Félicien is officially categorised as an aged, fresh cheese, which basically means that it’s a couple of weeks old.

The very soft yielding rind is a pale yellow, dusted with white mould.

The smell is somewhat reminiscent of a freshly talcum powdered baby, sweet with a slight rancid background smell (cue the flood of e-mails from angry mothers).

The pate can be almost liquid, requiring a spoon to serve and as it ages, it will also weep quite a lot of whey.

Unsurprisingly, for a cheese that could probably be scientifically classified as a liquid, It has a deliciously smooth, creamy texture.

The taste is delicate. Sour cream with a slightly fruity tang and nutty edge. As it ages, it will quickly start to become sour and bitter. After too long, it can become quite unpleasant. The trick is to catch it when it just starts to become runny and eat it within a week or two.

Saint Félicien is one of those classic French cheeses that, until recently, was rarely spotted outside France. Now, thankfully, it has a regular spot on our cheeseboard.

Reviewed by Nick & Olympia, 2013.

(4/5)

Époisses

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February 26th, 2017 Posted 8:10 pm

Époisses lays claim to being the smelliest cheese in the world. So smelly and offensive, that open carry is forbidden on the Paris Metro… apparently.

This is how it is presented in shops:

Epoisses

…however, unless you purchase the whole forme, this is how it will appear when you get it home:

Epoisses

The origins of this cheese date back to the 16th century and those naughty Trappist monks putting alcohol in everything. The cheese is washed with a mixture of brandy and brine. Though it is highly unlikely that the monks knew it at the time, a particular strain of bacteria (brevibacterium linens), notably responsible for smelly feet, was a key part of the recipe.

A popular cheese, it continued to be manufactured by many farms in the area. Then due to WW2, production ceased. The recipe was never recorded and only passed on from generation to generation through word of mouth.

Luckily, in 1956, the Berthauts, a couple of farmers near Dijon, had the foresight to revive the cheese and sought out the last surviving individuals who knew how to make it.

Époisses has a sticky orange rind. Did I mention, it’s also rather smelly? Maybe not as bad as expected by its claim of “the world’s smelliest cheese”, but certainly very pungent. Sweaty, smelly socks with a hint of slurry. It sounds horrible but to the hardened cheese connoisseur, it’s heaven (yes, we’re weird like that ;-) ). Sometimes, there is a strong smell of ammonia, but more about that in a moment.

The inner pate is a light creamy colour and should be soft and gooey or runny depending upon ripeness.

The texture is deliciously smooth and creamy and the flavour, perhaps surprisingly, is quite delicate. The pungent aromas are still present in the taste, but very subdued. There is also a wine reaction, that so often occurs with washed cheeses, in the form of delicious fruity notes that magically appear.

A note of warning. Éposses is one of those cheeses that really needs to be stored properly in order to get the best out of it. It is therefore, highly recommended that it be purchased from a proper fromagerie. Supermarkets do sell it, but very often it will lack the expected pungency and gooey decadence. Typically, supermarket sell-by dates are too short for refrigerated storage and the cheese is not fully ripe by the date indicated. In the opposite extreme, it can also become over-ripe and bitter, the aforementioned ammonia smell is a good indicator of this.

Époisses is a real classic cheese that is famous throughout the world. Don’t let bad supermarket experiences put you off, when this cheese is good, it is awesome.

Reviewed by Nick & Olympia, 2012

(4/5)

 

Cœur de Neufchâtel

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February 12th, 2017 Posted 7:50 pm

Well, it’s St. Valentine’s day (almost) and I’ve been trying, for years, to write up this one at around this time of year, but always missed. Yes, I know… cheesy, but when you have a heart shaped cheese, waddya gonna do?

To be fair, it isn’t the only heart shaped cheese, and Neufchâtel is not always heart shaped. It can be found in other forms, logs, wheels and bricks.

Cœur de Neufchâtel

Cœur de Neufchâtel

Regardless of the shape, Neufchâtel has a soft, smooth, velvety rind, covered in a fine white mould. The smell is very mushroomy with hints of ammonia.

The pate is gooey and pale yellow just inside the rind, but almost white and crumbly in the centre.

It has a very slight buttery smell that is almost non-existent.

The taste is immediately salty, quickly giving way to a pungent flavour accompanied by a burning sensation.

There is no real after taste, but it leaves you with the burning and an anæsthetic sensation.

It is also one of those cheese that has an interesting effect when taken with wine, producing a strange metallic taste.

A bit of a wolf in sheep’s clothing. You think it’s going to be mild mannered, a soft creamy, delicate cheese in a lovely little heart shape. But, then it bites.

It’s a bit of an unusual cheese and one to try because of it, but to be honest, it’s a little overrated.

Purchased from the cheese stall outside Brighton Station.

Reviewed by Nick & Olympia, 2012.

(1.5/5)

Délice des Crémiers

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January 22nd, 2017 Posted 8:04 pm

Rich, tangy, salty, triple cream decadence. A cheese to seriously clog the arteries.

A small round soft cheese with a powdery white dusting of mould, sometimes presented in a simple round wood veneer box.

The rind smells sharp gathering hints of ammonia as it ages. The pate, soft with an ice cream like texture has the slight acidic smell of sour milk. As it ages the pate closest to the rind becomes soft and gooey separating the rind from the cheese within..

The soft pate melts in the mouth with an instant hit of a sharp, salty, but delicate flavour of sour milk. The flavour quickly fades yielding a softer and pleasing palate that must be savoured.

As it ages, the cheese becomes sharper and more acid, introducing a burn similar to blue cheeses.

All in all a very pleasant cheese, oozing decadence and luxury.

Reviewed by Nick & Olympia, 2012

(4/5)

Tipsy Billy

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February 3rd, 2015 Posted 7:21 pm

Specially commissioned by La Cave à Fromage, one could possibly guess from the name that this is a goat’s cheese washed in some sort of alcohol… and you would be correct (though we seriously hope that “Billy” is only a general reference to goat rather than specific).

Tipsy Billy

Tipsy Billy

This starts life as a basic unpasteurised goat’s cheese made in the West Midlands. Then La Cave à Fromage snatch it away from its innocence and imbibe it with cider matured in whiskey barrels. It is then locked away in a dark, cool room for three to four weeks.

The results is rather spectacular.

The orangey coloured rind is very wet and sticky, with whitish cream pate, that darkens toward the edges.

The smell is like a delicate reminder of the boys locker room at middle school. Sweaty, but without the pungency puberty brings.

The texture thick and creamy, but the flavour consists of a whole list of adjectives: sweet, fruity, tangy, sharp, salty, goaty and perfumy. The latter being enhanced with a sip of white wine.

In conclusion, a very complex, but highly enjoyable cheese. Definitely one worth trying.

 

Produced by La Cave à Fromage

Purchased from La Cave à Fromage, Brighton.

Reviewed by Nick & Olympia, 2013

(4/5)

Cerney Vine

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August 25th, 2014 Posted 5:34 pm

We came across this at the Sturminster Newton Cheese Festival. It was attracting a lot of attention. A sweet smelling, wet lump, wrapped in soggy vine leaves, then neatly tied up with a raffia bow… Oh, and it’s washed in Brandy… which could have had something to do with its popularity.

Cerney Vine

Cerney Vine

Opening the cellophane wrapper the first thing that you notice is how wet it is. It is seriously soggy. It smells sweet and fruity, like medlar fruit and capers.

The paste is a brilliant white with the same sort of texture as a Ricotta.

The flavour is clean, fresh and sharp. There are definite hints of alcohol and fruit, but it dissipates quickly, leaving you wondering if it was ever there in the first place.

Unusually for a goat’s cheese, there is no goatiness whatsoever.

All in all a very enjoyable cheese with a definite element of the unusual.

Produced by Cerney Cheese

Purchased from The Sturminster Newton Cheese Festival

Reviewed by Nick & Olympia, 2013

(4.5/5)