Thursday, July 15, 2010

AOC protected Morbier Is Hard to Find

You asked for it and we've finally gotten in Morbier. This raw cow's milk cheese is superb and has a very interesting history as well.

Named after the small village of Morbier in the Jura region-the same region as Comte-and shares an intimate history with Comte as well.

Traditionally after making Comte the cheesemaker would have curd leftover, but not enough to make another wheel. They would take the remaining evening curd into a mold and spread ashover it to protect it overnight. The layer of ash was used to protect the cheese from flies, or any other undesirables intering the cheese. The next mornings' leftover curds were placed on top, creating a two layer cheese.

Nowadays this cheese is often made from one milking with the line of ash added for a more traditional look. Unlike many Morbier found in the U.S.A., our cheese is a true AOC cheese. It comes to us from a company that still practices the tradition of using the rich evening milk-which is full of nutrients due to the cows grazing all day-as well as curds made from the morning milk. Flavors of butter, hay, and sweet milk can be found in the paste while the washed rind adds flavors of leather and a slight bitterness.

Cesar talks about the beer:

Blanche de Bruxelles - Witbier is a very old type of beer, a speciality of the farm-breweries of old Brabant. The master brewers used their very best crops to make this beer. Blanche de Bruxelles owes its natural cloudiness to the large percentage (40 %) of wheat that goes into its composition.

The natural spice aromas of coriander and bitter orange peels are added during the brewing process. The brewing method, which includes infusion, is very slow. The beer, which is not filtered, is bottled and re fermented with yeast and brewing sugar. The beer has a fresh and mellow flavor with a hint of orange. It is really not like any other beer.

Every once in a while we come across a pairing that add flavors to the combination that were not there before. In my opinion this is one of them. While the beer has a light citrus flavor the combination gave it a floral depth. Xian says- "it tastes Purple", I think it's more lilac, and Kelly goes with lavender. Purple it is!

For the cheese it accentuates the earthiness from the rind and allows the rich milky flavors to shine. A fantastic combination that must be tried!