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A Taste of Corsica

A tempting wedge of l'Empereur

A tempting wedge of l’Empereur

If you’ve been in the Boston area this week, the climbing temperatures and persistent humidity probably have you longing for a vacation. We, too, are dreaming of beautiful beaches, coastal cities, and open-air markets. Even if a spur-of-the-moment getaway is sadly out of reach, you can still take a mental vacation to the island of Corsica, thanks to the recent arrival of some of our favorite Corsican cheeses. So if your summer plans are keeping you stateside, give these cheeses a chance to take you to far-off places.

L’Empereur
Named for Napoleon Bonaparte, whose flashy portrait graces the cheese label, this sheep’s milk tomme is firm and smooth-textured with a delicious, savory nuttiness. At the suggestion of our wine buyer, James, I recently took home a hunk of L’Empereur and paired it with a bottle of Domaine Comte Abbatucci “Cuvée Faustine” Rouge and a stream of traditional Corsican folk music (an experience I highly recommend).

The Emperor himself, looking rather dashing

The Emperor himself, looking rather dashing

A Casinca
A washed-rind goat cheese with plenty of personality, A Casinca is a favorite on the cheese counter. A pungent, barnyardy aroma greets you right away, and the layer under the rind oozes as you cut into the cheese, revealing a firmer, fudgy center. The cheese delivers a complex mix of flavors: meaty, floral, milky, and herbal.

U Bel Fiuritu
A Casinca’s sheep’s milk cousin is rich and creamy, spicy and herbaceous, with hints of crème fraîche and caramel– perfect for pairing with beer, or with full-bodied red wines. Like A Casinca, U Bel Fiuritu (which roughly translates to “small, beautiful flower) also boasts a rich, creamy texture and a formidable aroma, which grows more pronounced with age.

A Casinca and U Bel Fiuritu

A Casinca and U Bel Fiuritu

 

Shop our favorite Corsican cheese

L'Empereur Corsican CheeseA Casinca Corsican CheeseU Bel Fiuritu Corsican Cheese
L’Empereur »A Casinca »U Bel Fiuritu »

 

Jesi Nishibun is a cheesemonger at Formaggio Kitchen Cambridge. When she’s not behind the cheese counter, you can find her with her nose in a cookbook, or experimenting in her home kitchen.

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