Last fall, I had the opportunity to travel to the Jura with Ihsan and Valerie, owners of the Formaggio Kitchen shops, and visit Fromageries Marcel Petite, affineur (or ager) of Comté cheese. All cheesemongers on our counters hear a tremendous amount about Fort Saint Antoine where Marcel Petite ages their finest wheels – it is Continue Reading »
Switzerland was our focus. Leaving France behind, we arrived in Villeneuve on the shores of Lake Geneva (Lac du Monde) to meet with Bernard. Immediately, we were swept up and driven north into the Alpine hills and mountains of Gruyère.
In addition to the years spent developing an understanding of the nuances of fine cheeses, there are relationships to consider, and hundreds of cheeses to taste. We regularly send mongers to visit producers in Jura, France, where they personally select the next batch of cheeses that will be sold here and in our stores. At Continue Reading »
Landing in Geneva, our first day began auspiciously with 65°F blue skies and a new convertible (our reserved sedan was unavailable) to drive us west into the Jura.
What makes Comté so incredibly special? And, why is it a cheese I find myself drawn to time and again, lured in as if it had cast a spell on me?
Many of you may be familiar with Tyler as part of the two-man team behind our BBQ grill this past summer. Not many though, will be familiar with his behind-the-scenes role as Cave Manager.
Every two years, the biggest festival in the cheese world happens in Bra, Italy. The event is known simply as “Cheese.” Cheesemakers, cheesemongers, journalists, food lovers and folks lucky enough to live close by, descend on the small town of Bra to sample, sell and eat literally tons of cheese.
Comté is an alpine cheese produced in the Jura mountain range of France. Since our fateful first visit, we’ve gone on to establish the most complete collection of Marcel Petite Comté in the country, with cheeses ranging in age from 8 months to 36 months.
Perhaps best described as a French Gruyѐre, Comté seems to display a wider range of flavors than just about any other cheese we sell, and we enjoy delving into the nitty-gritty details of each wheel: its age, the location of the co-operative where it was made, and even the weather at the time the cows were milked.