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  • Writer's pictureYara Suki

No Whining about the Wine

Updated: Jul 21, 2020

I have a lot of notes from my French Cheese and Wine class today. Bare with me as I write them out for safekeeping!

Cheese is made of only 4 ingredients: Milk (cow, sheep or goat), Rennet (the enzyme that coagulates milk), Lactic Ferments, and Salt. According to the Gastronomicom expert, any cheese with other ingredients is simply a cheese specialty.

On average, cheese are 50% water, 25% fat and 20% protein.

There are many characteristics of cheese that help you identify cheeses: scent, firmness, appearance, etc.

The 8 Families of French Cheeses are

1 - Pates Fraiches (Fresh Cheeses)

- No rennet

- No aging

- Examples: Brousre, Petit Swise, Fromage Blanc

2 - Pates Molles a Croute Fleurie (Soft Cheese with Natural Rind)

- Usually cow milk with a little rennet that still develops a natural rind that is very fatty and very white

- Examples: Brie, Camembert, Chaource, St. Marcellin

3 - Pates Molles a Croute Lave (Soft Chees with Washed Rind)

- The wheels of cheese can be brushed with anything (beer, spirits, salt water, etc.)

- Usually exhibits a colorful and supple rind

- Examples: Munster (washed with pumice spirit), Epoises, and Maroilles (washed with beer)

4 - Pates Pressees non Cuites (Pressed, not Cooked)

- Pressing the cheese removes moisture from the cheese

- These cheese are usually brushed

- Typically tough and less smelly

- Examples: Cantal and St. Nectaire

5 - Pates Pressees Cuites (Pressed and Cooked)

- Usually Hard and rotated often to make uniform

- Examples: Emmental, Conte, Tomme de Brebis, and Gruyere

6 - Fromages de Chevre (Goat Cheese)

- Usually White, small portions

- The aging process is short and has very little aging

- "Pur Chevre" is all goat's milk

- Examples: Pelardon, Crottin de chavignol, Roussin

7 - Pates Persillees (Blue Cheeses)

- Characteristically strong smell

- Left to age for months or up to years

- Examples: Roquefort, Bleu d'Avergne, Fourme d'Ambert

8 - Pates Fondues (Melted Cheeses)

- Processed and Melted

- Used as a spread

- Examples: Vache Qui Rit and Cancoillatte

Parings are made based on the aftertaste and persistence of flavor in your mouth. In pairings, one item must be the star and not too distracting from the star. If both items come from the same Terroir, both items should work together. Beyond matching flavors, it is also key to match textures.

As a rule fo thumb, cheese should eba t room temperature and wines, whether white or red, should be slightly cooled. // Sparkling & Sweet wines - (42-46 degrees) // Light White - Sauvignon Blanc or Pinot Grigio (50 degrees) // Rich White - Chardonnay (53-57 degrees) // Light Red (47-60 degrees) // Rich Red (60-62 degrees)


stinky from that Munster

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