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Hooked on Cheese: Hoch Ybrig

Hooked on Cheese: Hoch Ybrig

Hoch Ybrig (pronounced “hock-ee-BREEG”) is a Swiss mountain cheese worthy of its extraordinary name. A firm cheese made near the slopes of the storied Hoch-Ybrig ski area, it fittingly expresses the snap and freshness of a locale called “tall mountain.”

I first tasted this cheese about eight years ago and, as cliché as it sounds, it was love at first bite. I remember it distinctly: I was meandering around the Winter Fancy Food Show when my friend Caroline Hostettler stopped me and handed over a piece of cheese as I walked by her booth. Hostettler is a premier importer of extremely high-quality Swiss cheeses, so I never turn down anything she has for me to sample. On this particular occasion, her selection knocked my socks off.

We all know the Swiss have a long history of making great cheese, and the Hoch Ybrig is a consummate example. A smaller cow’s milk Gruyère-style cheese — produced in 16-pound wheels instead of the usual 80-pounders — Hoch Ybrig ages much faster than larger Swiss cheeses, yet still has all the toasted grain and umami that make them famous. This variety has a slight cellar mustiness, a little bit of cheese funk on the rind from being washed with white wine, a light amber-straw color with some tiny eyes, and nice firmness without being crumbly.

Hoch Ybrig is selected exclusively by Rolf Beeler, Hostettler’s partner and the best Swiss affineur working today. It is only produced by cheesemakers at one dairy (there are no substitutes!), ensuring the consistent high quality of the product. This also means it does cost a bit more than lesser Swiss cheeses, but believe me when I say it’s worth every penny.

Autumn is quickly approaching, and it’s my favorite time of the year for entertaining. So in the fall, I always have a good size chunk of Hoch Ybrig ready to go. I serve it as part of a cheese plate paired with a white Burgundy wine, warmed in a Raclette machine or mixed into a delicious fondue. If you want to make friends with cheese lovers at your next gathering, go with the ‘Brig. Plus, when you tell your guests what you’re serving, you get to say Hoch Ybrig, which is guaranteed to make everyone smile!

You can follow Raymond's cheese adventures on Facebook, Twitter and his website. Additional reporting by Madeleine James.


Cheese: A Journey

'Tis the season-- sparkly lights, fragrant trees, gift-wrapped presents, and, most importantly, lots of dinner parties. Dinner parties mean appetizers, and appetizers mean cheese. Usually, the spread includes a orange and white striped wedge of cheddar, some kind of blue cheese, and maybe a Brie. Sometimes, though, there's something new. Last night, for instance, my family brought three cheeses to a friend's house. If it were last year, I would have shoveled lots of cheese and bread into my mouth (politely, of course), noted that they all tasted pretty good, and moved on. This year, however, as co-author of this cheese blog, I decided to do some research on the wheels and wedges that we enjoyed.

1) Saint Faron
This cheese, a wheel with a diameter of about five inches and a height of about four, is a cow's milk triple crème from France. Triple crèmes are cheeses to which cream is added to increase the butterfat content of the solid ingredients to 75% (overall, the fat content is about 40%). Other triple crèmes include mascarpone and St. André. As you can imagine, this cheese was very smooth. Like the Camembert we tasted earlier, it essentially melted in my mouth (I didn't lick this cheese as we did the Camembert because I was in public). It is an incredibly lush, full cheese. This lushness seemed to overwhelm any subtle notes that may have existed, which isn't a bad thing. To me, triple crèmes are about richness. In a country that despises and avoids fat like the plague (when, in fact, fat is a crucial ingredient to many of the most tasty foods), it is very pleasing to eat a cheese for which the fattiness is the point of it all.

2) Mousseron Jurassian
A harder, but still sliceable, wedge, this is a Jura Mountain cheese like Gruyère or Comté. The Jura Mountains are a part of the Alps that span Germany, Switzerland, and France. Because of the dense vegetation in this area, many its cheeses have an earthy taste. Mousseron Jurassian is made from raw cow's milk. I liked the cheese's even texture, and it is more mild than many of the cheeses that Kara and I have tasted thus far. M.J. is a very pleasant cheese, but not a stand out. If stronger cheeses are like the flashy, colorful Christmas decorations that wow the neighbors, M.J. is like a string of those white, tasteful lights that make a quiet and comforting holiday statement.

3) Hoch Ybring
Named after the area in Switzerland from where it comes, this is also a raw cow milk cheese. The Hoch Ybrig region famous for its skiing and hiking. The Hoch Ybrig cheese (pictured above) is famous for the white wine brine that it is washed in while it ages. This cheese was a favorite among the dinner guests. It has a strong earthy taste, a rough texture, and the grassy, mushroomy notes linger on one's tongue. This, in my opinion, is a perfect appetizer cheese. It is not overly pungent, but has enough flavor to be interesting.

And so, my first cheeses of the holiday season were delicious. I hope your Christmas season is as cheesy as mine!


Cheese: A Journey

'Tis the season-- sparkly lights, fragrant trees, gift-wrapped presents, and, most importantly, lots of dinner parties. Dinner parties mean appetizers, and appetizers mean cheese. Usually, the spread includes a orange and white striped wedge of cheddar, some kind of blue cheese, and maybe a Brie. Sometimes, though, there's something new. Last night, for instance, my family brought three cheeses to a friend's house. If it were last year, I would have shoveled lots of cheese and bread into my mouth (politely, of course), noted that they all tasted pretty good, and moved on. This year, however, as co-author of this cheese blog, I decided to do some research on the wheels and wedges that we enjoyed.

1) Saint Faron
This cheese, a wheel with a diameter of about five inches and a height of about four, is a cow's milk triple crème from France. Triple crèmes are cheeses to which cream is added to increase the butterfat content of the solid ingredients to 75% (overall, the fat content is about 40%). Other triple crèmes include mascarpone and St. André. As you can imagine, this cheese was very smooth. Like the Camembert we tasted earlier, it essentially melted in my mouth (I didn't lick this cheese as we did the Camembert because I was in public). It is an incredibly lush, full cheese. This lushness seemed to overwhelm any subtle notes that may have existed, which isn't a bad thing. To me, triple crèmes are about richness. In a country that despises and avoids fat like the plague (when, in fact, fat is a crucial ingredient to many of the most tasty foods), it is very pleasing to eat a cheese for which the fattiness is the point of it all.

2) Mousseron Jurassian
A harder, but still sliceable, wedge, this is a Jura Mountain cheese like Gruyère or Comté. The Jura Mountains are a part of the Alps that span Germany, Switzerland, and France. Because of the dense vegetation in this area, many its cheeses have an earthy taste. Mousseron Jurassian is made from raw cow's milk. I liked the cheese's even texture, and it is more mild than many of the cheeses that Kara and I have tasted thus far. M.J. is a very pleasant cheese, but not a stand out. If stronger cheeses are like the flashy, colorful Christmas decorations that wow the neighbors, M.J. is like a string of those white, tasteful lights that make a quiet and comforting holiday statement.

3) Hoch Ybring
Named after the area in Switzerland from where it comes, this is also a raw cow milk cheese. The Hoch Ybrig region famous for its skiing and hiking. The Hoch Ybrig cheese (pictured above) is famous for the white wine brine that it is washed in while it ages. This cheese was a favorite among the dinner guests. It has a strong earthy taste, a rough texture, and the grassy, mushroomy notes linger on one's tongue. This, in my opinion, is a perfect appetizer cheese. It is not overly pungent, but has enough flavor to be interesting.

And so, my first cheeses of the holiday season were delicious. I hope your Christmas season is as cheesy as mine!


Cheese: A Journey

'Tis the season-- sparkly lights, fragrant trees, gift-wrapped presents, and, most importantly, lots of dinner parties. Dinner parties mean appetizers, and appetizers mean cheese. Usually, the spread includes a orange and white striped wedge of cheddar, some kind of blue cheese, and maybe a Brie. Sometimes, though, there's something new. Last night, for instance, my family brought three cheeses to a friend's house. If it were last year, I would have shoveled lots of cheese and bread into my mouth (politely, of course), noted that they all tasted pretty good, and moved on. This year, however, as co-author of this cheese blog, I decided to do some research on the wheels and wedges that we enjoyed.

1) Saint Faron
This cheese, a wheel with a diameter of about five inches and a height of about four, is a cow's milk triple crème from France. Triple crèmes are cheeses to which cream is added to increase the butterfat content of the solid ingredients to 75% (overall, the fat content is about 40%). Other triple crèmes include mascarpone and St. André. As you can imagine, this cheese was very smooth. Like the Camembert we tasted earlier, it essentially melted in my mouth (I didn't lick this cheese as we did the Camembert because I was in public). It is an incredibly lush, full cheese. This lushness seemed to overwhelm any subtle notes that may have existed, which isn't a bad thing. To me, triple crèmes are about richness. In a country that despises and avoids fat like the plague (when, in fact, fat is a crucial ingredient to many of the most tasty foods), it is very pleasing to eat a cheese for which the fattiness is the point of it all.

2) Mousseron Jurassian
A harder, but still sliceable, wedge, this is a Jura Mountain cheese like Gruyère or Comté. The Jura Mountains are a part of the Alps that span Germany, Switzerland, and France. Because of the dense vegetation in this area, many its cheeses have an earthy taste. Mousseron Jurassian is made from raw cow's milk. I liked the cheese's even texture, and it is more mild than many of the cheeses that Kara and I have tasted thus far. M.J. is a very pleasant cheese, but not a stand out. If stronger cheeses are like the flashy, colorful Christmas decorations that wow the neighbors, M.J. is like a string of those white, tasteful lights that make a quiet and comforting holiday statement.

3) Hoch Ybring
Named after the area in Switzerland from where it comes, this is also a raw cow milk cheese. The Hoch Ybrig region famous for its skiing and hiking. The Hoch Ybrig cheese (pictured above) is famous for the white wine brine that it is washed in while it ages. This cheese was a favorite among the dinner guests. It has a strong earthy taste, a rough texture, and the grassy, mushroomy notes linger on one's tongue. This, in my opinion, is a perfect appetizer cheese. It is not overly pungent, but has enough flavor to be interesting.

And so, my first cheeses of the holiday season were delicious. I hope your Christmas season is as cheesy as mine!


Cheese: A Journey

'Tis the season-- sparkly lights, fragrant trees, gift-wrapped presents, and, most importantly, lots of dinner parties. Dinner parties mean appetizers, and appetizers mean cheese. Usually, the spread includes a orange and white striped wedge of cheddar, some kind of blue cheese, and maybe a Brie. Sometimes, though, there's something new. Last night, for instance, my family brought three cheeses to a friend's house. If it were last year, I would have shoveled lots of cheese and bread into my mouth (politely, of course), noted that they all tasted pretty good, and moved on. This year, however, as co-author of this cheese blog, I decided to do some research on the wheels and wedges that we enjoyed.

1) Saint Faron
This cheese, a wheel with a diameter of about five inches and a height of about four, is a cow's milk triple crème from France. Triple crèmes are cheeses to which cream is added to increase the butterfat content of the solid ingredients to 75% (overall, the fat content is about 40%). Other triple crèmes include mascarpone and St. André. As you can imagine, this cheese was very smooth. Like the Camembert we tasted earlier, it essentially melted in my mouth (I didn't lick this cheese as we did the Camembert because I was in public). It is an incredibly lush, full cheese. This lushness seemed to overwhelm any subtle notes that may have existed, which isn't a bad thing. To me, triple crèmes are about richness. In a country that despises and avoids fat like the plague (when, in fact, fat is a crucial ingredient to many of the most tasty foods), it is very pleasing to eat a cheese for which the fattiness is the point of it all.

2) Mousseron Jurassian
A harder, but still sliceable, wedge, this is a Jura Mountain cheese like Gruyère or Comté. The Jura Mountains are a part of the Alps that span Germany, Switzerland, and France. Because of the dense vegetation in this area, many its cheeses have an earthy taste. Mousseron Jurassian is made from raw cow's milk. I liked the cheese's even texture, and it is more mild than many of the cheeses that Kara and I have tasted thus far. M.J. is a very pleasant cheese, but not a stand out. If stronger cheeses are like the flashy, colorful Christmas decorations that wow the neighbors, M.J. is like a string of those white, tasteful lights that make a quiet and comforting holiday statement.

3) Hoch Ybring
Named after the area in Switzerland from where it comes, this is also a raw cow milk cheese. The Hoch Ybrig region famous for its skiing and hiking. The Hoch Ybrig cheese (pictured above) is famous for the white wine brine that it is washed in while it ages. This cheese was a favorite among the dinner guests. It has a strong earthy taste, a rough texture, and the grassy, mushroomy notes linger on one's tongue. This, in my opinion, is a perfect appetizer cheese. It is not overly pungent, but has enough flavor to be interesting.

And so, my first cheeses of the holiday season were delicious. I hope your Christmas season is as cheesy as mine!


Cheese: A Journey

'Tis the season-- sparkly lights, fragrant trees, gift-wrapped presents, and, most importantly, lots of dinner parties. Dinner parties mean appetizers, and appetizers mean cheese. Usually, the spread includes a orange and white striped wedge of cheddar, some kind of blue cheese, and maybe a Brie. Sometimes, though, there's something new. Last night, for instance, my family brought three cheeses to a friend's house. If it were last year, I would have shoveled lots of cheese and bread into my mouth (politely, of course), noted that they all tasted pretty good, and moved on. This year, however, as co-author of this cheese blog, I decided to do some research on the wheels and wedges that we enjoyed.

1) Saint Faron
This cheese, a wheel with a diameter of about five inches and a height of about four, is a cow's milk triple crème from France. Triple crèmes are cheeses to which cream is added to increase the butterfat content of the solid ingredients to 75% (overall, the fat content is about 40%). Other triple crèmes include mascarpone and St. André. As you can imagine, this cheese was very smooth. Like the Camembert we tasted earlier, it essentially melted in my mouth (I didn't lick this cheese as we did the Camembert because I was in public). It is an incredibly lush, full cheese. This lushness seemed to overwhelm any subtle notes that may have existed, which isn't a bad thing. To me, triple crèmes are about richness. In a country that despises and avoids fat like the plague (when, in fact, fat is a crucial ingredient to many of the most tasty foods), it is very pleasing to eat a cheese for which the fattiness is the point of it all.

2) Mousseron Jurassian
A harder, but still sliceable, wedge, this is a Jura Mountain cheese like Gruyère or Comté. The Jura Mountains are a part of the Alps that span Germany, Switzerland, and France. Because of the dense vegetation in this area, many its cheeses have an earthy taste. Mousseron Jurassian is made from raw cow's milk. I liked the cheese's even texture, and it is more mild than many of the cheeses that Kara and I have tasted thus far. M.J. is a very pleasant cheese, but not a stand out. If stronger cheeses are like the flashy, colorful Christmas decorations that wow the neighbors, M.J. is like a string of those white, tasteful lights that make a quiet and comforting holiday statement.

3) Hoch Ybring
Named after the area in Switzerland from where it comes, this is also a raw cow milk cheese. The Hoch Ybrig region famous for its skiing and hiking. The Hoch Ybrig cheese (pictured above) is famous for the white wine brine that it is washed in while it ages. This cheese was a favorite among the dinner guests. It has a strong earthy taste, a rough texture, and the grassy, mushroomy notes linger on one's tongue. This, in my opinion, is a perfect appetizer cheese. It is not overly pungent, but has enough flavor to be interesting.

And so, my first cheeses of the holiday season were delicious. I hope your Christmas season is as cheesy as mine!


Cheese: A Journey

'Tis the season-- sparkly lights, fragrant trees, gift-wrapped presents, and, most importantly, lots of dinner parties. Dinner parties mean appetizers, and appetizers mean cheese. Usually, the spread includes a orange and white striped wedge of cheddar, some kind of blue cheese, and maybe a Brie. Sometimes, though, there's something new. Last night, for instance, my family brought three cheeses to a friend's house. If it were last year, I would have shoveled lots of cheese and bread into my mouth (politely, of course), noted that they all tasted pretty good, and moved on. This year, however, as co-author of this cheese blog, I decided to do some research on the wheels and wedges that we enjoyed.

1) Saint Faron
This cheese, a wheel with a diameter of about five inches and a height of about four, is a cow's milk triple crème from France. Triple crèmes are cheeses to which cream is added to increase the butterfat content of the solid ingredients to 75% (overall, the fat content is about 40%). Other triple crèmes include mascarpone and St. André. As you can imagine, this cheese was very smooth. Like the Camembert we tasted earlier, it essentially melted in my mouth (I didn't lick this cheese as we did the Camembert because I was in public). It is an incredibly lush, full cheese. This lushness seemed to overwhelm any subtle notes that may have existed, which isn't a bad thing. To me, triple crèmes are about richness. In a country that despises and avoids fat like the plague (when, in fact, fat is a crucial ingredient to many of the most tasty foods), it is very pleasing to eat a cheese for which the fattiness is the point of it all.

2) Mousseron Jurassian
A harder, but still sliceable, wedge, this is a Jura Mountain cheese like Gruyère or Comté. The Jura Mountains are a part of the Alps that span Germany, Switzerland, and France. Because of the dense vegetation in this area, many its cheeses have an earthy taste. Mousseron Jurassian is made from raw cow's milk. I liked the cheese's even texture, and it is more mild than many of the cheeses that Kara and I have tasted thus far. M.J. is a very pleasant cheese, but not a stand out. If stronger cheeses are like the flashy, colorful Christmas decorations that wow the neighbors, M.J. is like a string of those white, tasteful lights that make a quiet and comforting holiday statement.

3) Hoch Ybring
Named after the area in Switzerland from where it comes, this is also a raw cow milk cheese. The Hoch Ybrig region famous for its skiing and hiking. The Hoch Ybrig cheese (pictured above) is famous for the white wine brine that it is washed in while it ages. This cheese was a favorite among the dinner guests. It has a strong earthy taste, a rough texture, and the grassy, mushroomy notes linger on one's tongue. This, in my opinion, is a perfect appetizer cheese. It is not overly pungent, but has enough flavor to be interesting.

And so, my first cheeses of the holiday season were delicious. I hope your Christmas season is as cheesy as mine!


Cheese: A Journey

'Tis the season-- sparkly lights, fragrant trees, gift-wrapped presents, and, most importantly, lots of dinner parties. Dinner parties mean appetizers, and appetizers mean cheese. Usually, the spread includes a orange and white striped wedge of cheddar, some kind of blue cheese, and maybe a Brie. Sometimes, though, there's something new. Last night, for instance, my family brought three cheeses to a friend's house. If it were last year, I would have shoveled lots of cheese and bread into my mouth (politely, of course), noted that they all tasted pretty good, and moved on. This year, however, as co-author of this cheese blog, I decided to do some research on the wheels and wedges that we enjoyed.

1) Saint Faron
This cheese, a wheel with a diameter of about five inches and a height of about four, is a cow's milk triple crème from France. Triple crèmes are cheeses to which cream is added to increase the butterfat content of the solid ingredients to 75% (overall, the fat content is about 40%). Other triple crèmes include mascarpone and St. André. As you can imagine, this cheese was very smooth. Like the Camembert we tasted earlier, it essentially melted in my mouth (I didn't lick this cheese as we did the Camembert because I was in public). It is an incredibly lush, full cheese. This lushness seemed to overwhelm any subtle notes that may have existed, which isn't a bad thing. To me, triple crèmes are about richness. In a country that despises and avoids fat like the plague (when, in fact, fat is a crucial ingredient to many of the most tasty foods), it is very pleasing to eat a cheese for which the fattiness is the point of it all.

2) Mousseron Jurassian
A harder, but still sliceable, wedge, this is a Jura Mountain cheese like Gruyère or Comté. The Jura Mountains are a part of the Alps that span Germany, Switzerland, and France. Because of the dense vegetation in this area, many its cheeses have an earthy taste. Mousseron Jurassian is made from raw cow's milk. I liked the cheese's even texture, and it is more mild than many of the cheeses that Kara and I have tasted thus far. M.J. is a very pleasant cheese, but not a stand out. If stronger cheeses are like the flashy, colorful Christmas decorations that wow the neighbors, M.J. is like a string of those white, tasteful lights that make a quiet and comforting holiday statement.

3) Hoch Ybring
Named after the area in Switzerland from where it comes, this is also a raw cow milk cheese. The Hoch Ybrig region famous for its skiing and hiking. The Hoch Ybrig cheese (pictured above) is famous for the white wine brine that it is washed in while it ages. This cheese was a favorite among the dinner guests. It has a strong earthy taste, a rough texture, and the grassy, mushroomy notes linger on one's tongue. This, in my opinion, is a perfect appetizer cheese. It is not overly pungent, but has enough flavor to be interesting.

And so, my first cheeses of the holiday season were delicious. I hope your Christmas season is as cheesy as mine!


Cheese: A Journey

'Tis the season-- sparkly lights, fragrant trees, gift-wrapped presents, and, most importantly, lots of dinner parties. Dinner parties mean appetizers, and appetizers mean cheese. Usually, the spread includes a orange and white striped wedge of cheddar, some kind of blue cheese, and maybe a Brie. Sometimes, though, there's something new. Last night, for instance, my family brought three cheeses to a friend's house. If it were last year, I would have shoveled lots of cheese and bread into my mouth (politely, of course), noted that they all tasted pretty good, and moved on. This year, however, as co-author of this cheese blog, I decided to do some research on the wheels and wedges that we enjoyed.

1) Saint Faron
This cheese, a wheel with a diameter of about five inches and a height of about four, is a cow's milk triple crème from France. Triple crèmes are cheeses to which cream is added to increase the butterfat content of the solid ingredients to 75% (overall, the fat content is about 40%). Other triple crèmes include mascarpone and St. André. As you can imagine, this cheese was very smooth. Like the Camembert we tasted earlier, it essentially melted in my mouth (I didn't lick this cheese as we did the Camembert because I was in public). It is an incredibly lush, full cheese. This lushness seemed to overwhelm any subtle notes that may have existed, which isn't a bad thing. To me, triple crèmes are about richness. In a country that despises and avoids fat like the plague (when, in fact, fat is a crucial ingredient to many of the most tasty foods), it is very pleasing to eat a cheese for which the fattiness is the point of it all.

2) Mousseron Jurassian
A harder, but still sliceable, wedge, this is a Jura Mountain cheese like Gruyère or Comté. The Jura Mountains are a part of the Alps that span Germany, Switzerland, and France. Because of the dense vegetation in this area, many its cheeses have an earthy taste. Mousseron Jurassian is made from raw cow's milk. I liked the cheese's even texture, and it is more mild than many of the cheeses that Kara and I have tasted thus far. M.J. is a very pleasant cheese, but not a stand out. If stronger cheeses are like the flashy, colorful Christmas decorations that wow the neighbors, M.J. is like a string of those white, tasteful lights that make a quiet and comforting holiday statement.

3) Hoch Ybring
Named after the area in Switzerland from where it comes, this is also a raw cow milk cheese. The Hoch Ybrig region famous for its skiing and hiking. The Hoch Ybrig cheese (pictured above) is famous for the white wine brine that it is washed in while it ages. This cheese was a favorite among the dinner guests. It has a strong earthy taste, a rough texture, and the grassy, mushroomy notes linger on one's tongue. This, in my opinion, is a perfect appetizer cheese. It is not overly pungent, but has enough flavor to be interesting.

And so, my first cheeses of the holiday season were delicious. I hope your Christmas season is as cheesy as mine!


Cheese: A Journey

'Tis the season-- sparkly lights, fragrant trees, gift-wrapped presents, and, most importantly, lots of dinner parties. Dinner parties mean appetizers, and appetizers mean cheese. Usually, the spread includes a orange and white striped wedge of cheddar, some kind of blue cheese, and maybe a Brie. Sometimes, though, there's something new. Last night, for instance, my family brought three cheeses to a friend's house. If it were last year, I would have shoveled lots of cheese and bread into my mouth (politely, of course), noted that they all tasted pretty good, and moved on. This year, however, as co-author of this cheese blog, I decided to do some research on the wheels and wedges that we enjoyed.

1) Saint Faron
This cheese, a wheel with a diameter of about five inches and a height of about four, is a cow's milk triple crème from France. Triple crèmes are cheeses to which cream is added to increase the butterfat content of the solid ingredients to 75% (overall, the fat content is about 40%). Other triple crèmes include mascarpone and St. André. As you can imagine, this cheese was very smooth. Like the Camembert we tasted earlier, it essentially melted in my mouth (I didn't lick this cheese as we did the Camembert because I was in public). It is an incredibly lush, full cheese. This lushness seemed to overwhelm any subtle notes that may have existed, which isn't a bad thing. To me, triple crèmes are about richness. In a country that despises and avoids fat like the plague (when, in fact, fat is a crucial ingredient to many of the most tasty foods), it is very pleasing to eat a cheese for which the fattiness is the point of it all.

2) Mousseron Jurassian
A harder, but still sliceable, wedge, this is a Jura Mountain cheese like Gruyère or Comté. The Jura Mountains are a part of the Alps that span Germany, Switzerland, and France. Because of the dense vegetation in this area, many its cheeses have an earthy taste. Mousseron Jurassian is made from raw cow's milk. I liked the cheese's even texture, and it is more mild than many of the cheeses that Kara and I have tasted thus far. M.J. is a very pleasant cheese, but not a stand out. If stronger cheeses are like the flashy, colorful Christmas decorations that wow the neighbors, M.J. is like a string of those white, tasteful lights that make a quiet and comforting holiday statement.

3) Hoch Ybring
Named after the area in Switzerland from where it comes, this is also a raw cow milk cheese. The Hoch Ybrig region famous for its skiing and hiking. The Hoch Ybrig cheese (pictured above) is famous for the white wine brine that it is washed in while it ages. This cheese was a favorite among the dinner guests. It has a strong earthy taste, a rough texture, and the grassy, mushroomy notes linger on one's tongue. This, in my opinion, is a perfect appetizer cheese. It is not overly pungent, but has enough flavor to be interesting.

And so, my first cheeses of the holiday season were delicious. I hope your Christmas season is as cheesy as mine!


Cheese: A Journey

'Tis the season-- sparkly lights, fragrant trees, gift-wrapped presents, and, most importantly, lots of dinner parties. Dinner parties mean appetizers, and appetizers mean cheese. Usually, the spread includes a orange and white striped wedge of cheddar, some kind of blue cheese, and maybe a Brie. Sometimes, though, there's something new. Last night, for instance, my family brought three cheeses to a friend's house. If it were last year, I would have shoveled lots of cheese and bread into my mouth (politely, of course), noted that they all tasted pretty good, and moved on. This year, however, as co-author of this cheese blog, I decided to do some research on the wheels and wedges that we enjoyed.

1) Saint Faron
This cheese, a wheel with a diameter of about five inches and a height of about four, is a cow's milk triple crème from France. Triple crèmes are cheeses to which cream is added to increase the butterfat content of the solid ingredients to 75% (overall, the fat content is about 40%). Other triple crèmes include mascarpone and St. André. As you can imagine, this cheese was very smooth. Like the Camembert we tasted earlier, it essentially melted in my mouth (I didn't lick this cheese as we did the Camembert because I was in public). It is an incredibly lush, full cheese. This lushness seemed to overwhelm any subtle notes that may have existed, which isn't a bad thing. To me, triple crèmes are about richness. In a country that despises and avoids fat like the plague (when, in fact, fat is a crucial ingredient to many of the most tasty foods), it is very pleasing to eat a cheese for which the fattiness is the point of it all.

2) Mousseron Jurassian
A harder, but still sliceable, wedge, this is a Jura Mountain cheese like Gruyère or Comté. The Jura Mountains are a part of the Alps that span Germany, Switzerland, and France. Because of the dense vegetation in this area, many its cheeses have an earthy taste. Mousseron Jurassian is made from raw cow's milk. I liked the cheese's even texture, and it is more mild than many of the cheeses that Kara and I have tasted thus far. M.J. is a very pleasant cheese, but not a stand out. If stronger cheeses are like the flashy, colorful Christmas decorations that wow the neighbors, M.J. is like a string of those white, tasteful lights that make a quiet and comforting holiday statement.

3) Hoch Ybring
Named after the area in Switzerland from where it comes, this is also a raw cow milk cheese. The Hoch Ybrig region famous for its skiing and hiking. The Hoch Ybrig cheese (pictured above) is famous for the white wine brine that it is washed in while it ages. This cheese was a favorite among the dinner guests. It has a strong earthy taste, a rough texture, and the grassy, mushroomy notes linger on one's tongue. This, in my opinion, is a perfect appetizer cheese. It is not overly pungent, but has enough flavor to be interesting.

And so, my first cheeses of the holiday season were delicious. I hope your Christmas season is as cheesy as mine!


Watch the video: Schweizer Ski u0026 Snowboardschule Hoch Ybrig (November 2021).