July 26, 2017

Le Trèfle du Perche

Trèfle and Mothais sur Feuille

Walk into any fromagerie in France during goat cheese season (April to November) and you will be faced with a tempting array of wrinkly rectangles, fresh drums, blue mold covered cylinders, two-toned cones, grey pyramids, white diamonds, discs wrapped in leaves, and a distinctive four-leaf clover, le Trèfle du Perche.

In the French cheese world, this one is fairly recent creation.
Back in 1999 a group of 7 artisan cheesemakers in the northern part of the Loire Valley and the southern part of Normandy established l’Association des Fromagers Caprins Perche et Loir (after numerous meetings involving copious amounts of local cheese and wine I like to think) and created a new goat cheese. Their goal was to come up with a fromage de chèvre that would be instantly recognizable and that would become associated with their region. During its inception, one of the members spotted an unusual, four-leaf clover shaped clay cheese mold in a local rural museum and the rest is history.

Fromage de Chèvre

Beneath its thin rind of blue-gray ash and mold, the snowy white interior is rich, creamy and melt-in-your-mouth tender. Depending on its age, the flavors can range from fresh milk and hazelnuts, to peppery with a long finish.

Le Trèfle, which means "clover" in French, has been in production since 2005 and is currently made by a dozen farmers in 4 French departments; the Eure-et-Loir, the Loir-et-Cher, the Sarthe and the Orne. This little goat cheese is unpasteurized, with a minimum affinage* of 10 days and a maximum of about 1 month. In 2012 the l’Association des Fromagers Caprins Perche et Loir (AFCPL) applied for an AOC for their cheese. I'm wishing them the best of luck!

Le Trèfle

A few wine suggestions to pair with le Trèfle; a Sauvignon Blanc or Chenin Blanc from the Loire Valley if you prefer white, or a Gamay from the Loire Valley if you prefer red.


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nice post

Anonymous said...

I really need to take a cheese tour of France.

Ken Broadhurst said...

Is the trèfle du Perche associated with a certain town, or is it made all over the area. We have really enjoyed seeing and eating in Mortagne, Bellême, and Nogent-le-Rotrou.

Jennifer said...

Thank you!

We all do. :) Cheese is one of the best things about living in France!

From what I've read, it is made all over the area. Le Perche is a gorgeous region! We've been to Mortagne and Bellême as well and have very fond memories.