Three Intriguing Goat’s Milk Cheeses

Three Intriguing Goat's Milk Cheeses on http://www.theculinarylife.com

 - Three unique goat’s milk cheeses – this cheese plate stands out above the rest. -

Goat’s milk has a very specific flavor: many would call it tart, and there are countless simple goat cheeses that play up this personality trait more than anything else. True goat cheese lovers, however, understand that goat’s milk can carry with it a symphony of characteristic ranging from grassy, to meaty, to even a subtle sweetness that rewards those willing to pay attention to nuance of flavor. Which makes for a very engaging cheese plate.

It’s these other traits that we’re focusing on today. Below you’ll find three goat cheeses that stand outside of the crowd, some with swagger, others with more sensitivity. While these cheeses may provide a hint of that tart goaty profile, they are more subtle and complex than your everyday varieties of chevré. Folks who have historically thumbed their nose at goat cheeses might very find this cheese plate the perfect introduction to a whole new world of dairy love.

 

Three Intriguing Goat's Milk Cheeses on http://www.theculinarylife.com

Chèvre de Argental – France

Tender and demure, Chèvre de Argental prefers to keep her goat’s milk roots under wraps until she’s gotten to know you better. This cheese likes to leave a simple first impression of silky flexibility, sharing tidbits of grass and sea breeze like you’re talking a stroll along the coast. You may begin to believe that she’s a cow’s milk girl, with a rich texture that leaves you dreaming of fatty, fresh-churned butter. But pay attention to the followup: Chèvre de Argental’s true nature shines through, playful, salty, and charming as all get out. As she kisses your cheek goodbye, you’ll be pleased to discover a meat roundness that lingers like a light peck of terra-cotta lipstick on your skin, sweet and savory all at the same time. I do love a girl that keeps me guessing.

   flourish-rule

 

Three Intriguing Goat's Milk Cheeses on http://www.theculinarylife.com

Vare – Spain

This firm, chalky cheese is a stout beauty queen who likes to toss out a little sugar with her sass. Nutty and complex with just a hint of capriciousness, Vare is barnyardy without a ton a funk, rolling across your tongue with a lovely hit of meatiness that reminded me of fat, tender noodles left to simmer in a pot of very rich chicken soup. If you listen closely to Vare’s baritone song, you’ll find the ending is both sweet and salty, pairing nicely with its gently goaty personality. Perfect on its own, or a superb treat when shredded over a green salad with peanuts and sautéed asparagus.
flourish-rule

 

Three Intriguing Goat's Milk Cheeses on http://www.theculinarylife.com

Bucheron – France

Meat: beef ribs, pork chops, chicken pot pie; these are all the things I dreamed of upon my first bite of Bucheron. A umami-bomb if there ever was one, this cheese is meatier than most carnivorous dishes I can think of, with a hint of vegetal notes hidden within its depths. Firm and pasty, the cream line that envelopes this cheese is a lesson in exquisite saltiness, with enough tender brine to cause salt-lovers to drop from their chairs in a fit of sheer bliss. You’ll find a good dose of tart goatiness here, but not in the way you’re accustomed to tasting it; with so much full bodied flavor, you’ll have a hard time singling out Bucheron’s capricious mids and highs, instead drifting off on a wave of deep, savory ecstasy.
flourish-rule

What intriguing goat’s milk cheeses do you favor?

Comments

  1. Anna Mindess says:

    Oh Steph, love how you wax poetical on my favorite: goat cheeses! They are the only kind I eat. Ahh, I fondly remember Bucheron from France. Here, I fancy Humboldt Fog or Goat Brie. I’m usually a lone goat cheese nibbler. My husband says they taste too “udder-y”. Oh well, more for me.

    • Stephanie Stiavetti says:

      I’m definitely a Humboldt Fog lover! It’s one of my favorites. :) Goat lovers of the world, unite!

  2. I came for your sweet potato gratin, but you are a woman after my own heart with this goat cheese post! I have been obsessed with Le Chevrot since I found it – the variation between mild and pungent aged had me hooked. And one of the things that I love about it, much like the Boucheron, is that if you get one that aged enough, you have the Brie-like consistency on the outer rim, with the creamier centre.

    Speaking of Argental, I am somewhat obsessed with Brebirousse d’Argental – it’s sheep’s milk (for which I am slowly developing a passion) and perfectly creamy and pungent for when I want something like Brie or Taleggio with a little more of a kick.

    Happy to have found your blog – it’s lovely!

    • Stephanie Stiavetti says:

      Thank you for the kind words, AK. My most recent experience with Le Chevrot did indeed have that melty creamline, and it was divine!

      And funny you should mention Brebirousse d’Argental – I wrote a post on it not too long ago. :) Great minds think alike. Here’s the post if you want to check it out:

  3. Wow. Very waxed poetic, your descriptions. Applying a lyrical bend to goat cheese, though…well, why not? While I enjoy goat cheese well enough, it’s the sheep milk cheeses that get me more intrigued.

    Some of the combinations of sheep and cow are interesting; California made Mobay, Italian Robiola Bosina or La Tur, and even some Spanish faux-Manchegos out there of all three.

    • Stephanie Stiavetti says:

      Thanks, Chris! :) I’d have to say I’m a huge fan of the sheep’s milk myself as well, though a superlative goat can surely make my day. La Tur is definitely at the top of my favorite mixed-milk list!

  4. I knew goat cheese had a lot of personality but I rarely have read it so well described. Alas, now you have me longing for it but that is easily remedied. Great distinctions made and point well taken that not all goat cheese is the same. I have surprised many a customer with a smooth goat gouda. More goat for all!

    Thanks for a well written and playful piece

    P.S. This screen is displaying funny so hope my info comes out okay

    • Stephanie Stiavetti says:

      Oh, you had me at “goat milk gouda.” I was just munching on some Drunken Goat, one of my favorites! :)

  5. Slightly off the goat topic but speaking of drunken goat, if you have the chance to try Brillo de Treviso an Italian cow’s milk cheese, which is washed in Barolo wine, it really puts DG out to pasture with its much headier, stronger rind.

    If you like stronger wine flavor, that is.

    • Stephanie Stiavetti says:

      Oh really? I’ve never tried it. Do you guys have it in stock right now? I can probably stop in this weekend and give it a try.

Trackbacks

  1. […] four French goat cheeses make up a lively cheese plate, each in their own individual way. Some are tart, others are more […]

Leave a Comment

*