Finally have the chance to add to the post I started the other day about last week's delectable cheese tasting with my sister.
For someone who finds Roquefort cheese a bit too...well...fort, the Bleu des Basques was a breath of fresh air. It had all the qualities I appreciate in a bleu cheese, without being too salty or overwhelming. It was sophisticated, smooth and very, very tasty.
The little Picodon had a dense, chalky interior with an earthy flavor and a blue-grey rind from aging. It is made from raw goat's milk in the mountains of the Rhone-Alps, specifically the Ardèche and the Drôme. It was granted AOC status in 1991 and has it's own festival every summer.
A final taste of Brie de Meaux was supposedly the last wish of Louis XVI before he was sent to the guillotine and it was also declared the "King of Cheese" at the Congress in Vienna in 1814. Creamy and rich with hints of hazelnut and fruit, Brie de Meaux has been made for over 1000 years and was a favorite of Charlemagne's. It is made from unpasteurized cow's milk and was granted AOC status in 1980.
Beaufort, delicious Beaufort! Made in the French Alps and aged for four to twelve months, it has a lovely, buttery scent and is best when served with white wine. It's flavor is smooth and fruity. The best is Beaufort d'Alpage which is made exclusively from the milk of free roaming Tarentaise cows that graze on the alpine grasses and flowers.