It's official, the Cheese Newsletter is now the Cheeseletter. Thanks to the two people who reached out and told me I'm clever...you know who you are!
This little business is growing. We've been moving a LOT of cheese this month. Like "me scrambling trying to keep cheese stocked" type of busy. The hot weather brings about lots of opportunities to lounge around eating cheese I guess. In fact, I did that just yesterday afternoon. A friend has been making some kick-@## rhubarb flavoured gin which she generously shared with me and my tasty-beverage lovin', cheese eatin' husband. So of course I brought the cheese. We smeared some Délice de deux Sèvres and some funky, past it's BB, L'Origine de Charlevoix on some local baguette and lived our best lives for an hour.
We've beefed up our monthly cheese order which is set to arrive next week. We will have a pretty broad selection to choose from. From 4 year old Gouda to a new soft, creamy goat cheese. I think at the time of writing this, there was one Burrata left unspoken for. I have to tell you, that stuff is crazy good. If you follow me on instagram (ahem...@lalibertecheese) you will have seen my photo of burrata on my pizza. Well, as luck would have it, my pizza was one of the last to come out of the oven, so everybody was full by that time. Which meant that, I, pretty much got the whole, giant ball to myself. Well planned and well timed! Sometimes burrata can be quite runny, this had the texture of ricotta mixed with cream cheese...which is to say super good!
Deadline for ordering the monthly cheese box will be June 27 @ 5pm, which is when I start cutting! They will be delivered that week throughout the Comox Valley and Campbell River areas. Port Alberni, well that might take a bit longer due to the ongoing travel issues on Highway 4. I anticipate your cheese being delivered early July...stay tuned for the actual dates. If you happen to be travelling up this way before then and want your cheese asap, I can have it ready for pickup.
And don't forget you can special order a box, platter or custom selection any time of the month. It's just our monthly cheese boxes are a little more curated and they are always the first to get anything new.
Our In Stock page is updated with current stock as well as what is arriving next week.
Hmm, not a ton going on with us, other than that we are super excited that our cheese is being served at the Beaufort Winery on a regular basis. Our great friends and supporters, the Mustard Lady, are now providing charcuterie boxes on the weekends for folks to enjoy with their wine tastings. You will find some of our monthly cheeses tucked in there along with mustard, crackers, Vancouver Island sourced meat and lots of other nibbles. The cheese selection will change based on our stock, but we can guarantee that all of the cheese will pair nicely with the wines. I know this, because of the very rigorous, very scientific testing program that I undertake on a regular basis. I can guarantee you that all the Beaufort wines go really well with cheese. I recommend pre-ordering so you don't miss out!
MONTHLY CHEESE REVIEW
Yes, I'm going to talk about goat cheese again this month...last time, I promise.
Ok, so if somebody asked me what my overall favourite cheese is (which somebody did the other day), I would (and did) say goat cheese. This would not have been the case a year ago. I think the chalky, fresh goat cheese has its place, but not on my favourites table. And every once in a while you might find a great, creamy, oozy, brie style...hello Woolwich triple cream goat cheese, I'm talking to you! But overall, I am often disappointed when I cut into a round of goat cheese where I'm expecting a texture and and depth of flavour that isn't there. Often the grocery store goat brie offerings are super bland, pasty and straight up boring. Life's too short for boring cheese, so grab yourself a Munster!
In addition to flavour, I love interesting looking cheese. And surface ripened, wrinkly goat cheese always looks so good...if you like brainy cheese. My favourite place at a cheese store is the display of all of the different goat cheeses, little rounds, squares, pyramids of wrinkly cheeses, sitting there, unwrapped.
The point of all this is I am constantly surprised that the selection of goat cheese that I bring in doesn't fly off the shelves. I mean to me, they are the best looking cheeses in the deli. But they languish there, unwanted. Personally, if I didn't own a cheese business and I was visiting the store to buy cheese, I would be buying the goat cheese...like, every time. But we always have some hanging around at the end of the month, sad and slumpy. I'm mystified. Does goat cheese look scary? Are people put off because of previous experiences with overly strong goaty flavours? I just don't understand it.
Well that was the case up until this month...I don't know if it was the look of the cheese, but the Délice des deux Sèvre went fast. So fast, I only got one round of it. This cheese is an ash covered, wrinkly oval shape cheese that develops an amazing flavour. I initially looked up the word sèvre and I thought it meant "coffin". Which made sense because it is kind of shaped like a coffin, but apparently that is not the case and the name translates to "Delight of two weans", whatever that means. Maybe someone with better French than I have could fill me in. I'll still refer to it as the coffin cheese though. "Hi, would you like some coffin cheese?".
I cracked into my piece this weekend after it sat in the fridge for 2 weeks waiting for the perfect moment. I thought it would be oozy and wet like Grey Owl can get, but it was still fairly firm, standing up on it's own, and it's texture was like triple cream. All of this to say, don't be scared to try something different. That grey, ashy cheese that looks like a mini coffin may be the tastiest thing you eat that day.
Ha, ha, I just proofread this and realized that I didn't actually say "I like it". Well I liked it. I liked it a lot. But now it's all gone. I'll bring it back for August.
My other favourite cheese this month was 24 month Comté. Well, this goes to show you that things don't always improve with age. That isn't to say the 36 month Comté that we typically bring in wasn't excellent, but I could honestly take it or leave it. The 24 year old, however, is on a different level. Different flavour, different texture. So shout out to our customer who requested it...we have him to thank for this gem. We are bringing in some 18 month Comté later this month as well. So it'll be a taste-off! Or a cheese-off? Or a tasty, cheese-off? Cheesy-taste off? We will try them allllll!
THIS MONTH'S CHEESE LIST
Ok, what's coming in this month. Well as mentioned above, I'm bringing in some 18 month Comté. But we have a few others that we've added on last minute which are new to us.
Prima Donna is an aged, (approximately 18 months) , Gouda style cheese from Holland. I've had a number of folks come in asking for Gouda, and this is the first time that I've stocked it.
This is a firm, but creamy cheese, with flecks of crystal throughout. It has a mild, salty flavour and can be compared to a Reggiano, but not as dry.
L'Archibuchette is our new goat cheese of the month, though unintentionally. Our standing order of Grey Owl was not fulfilled this month, so we had to find something to fill that hole. L'Archibuchette (honestly I think I'm spelling it correctly, but my eyes start to blur when I'm reading that word....there's a lot of letters in there) is made at Fromagerie de L'Atelier, the makers of one of my faves, the Pavé de L'Atelier. They really do make some great cheese.
A rectangular shaped cheese, it has a wrinkly, soft surface and tastes of hazelnuts, and flowers with a tangy, salty finish. Fromagerie de L'Atelier is a small cheesemaker out of Quebec with a very small social media exposure soooo, I do not have a photo of this cheese. But if you use your cheese imagination, envision a light coloured rectangle, with a soft, rippled surface, lying on a rustic wooden board, a cheese knife strategically placed, and a piece of baguette just off to the side, slightly out of focus. I'll add a photo as soon as a I can for those who struggle with cheese visioning!
And for the cheddar lovers out there, a 4-year old Perron, Le Doyen. From Fromagerie Perron in Quebec, these folks have been making cheese there for 170 years! It is a rich and crumbly cheese with a texture that melts in your mouth. It has salt crystal throughout, typical of an aged cheese and a nutty flavour.
Here is our list of in stock and soon to arrive cheese. You can pre-order online or visit the deli at the Mustard lady store, where you can also pick up some fine, locally made mustard, and some Vancouver Island based charcuterie meats (you can also add these onto your online order through our website).
(In Stock unless arrival date provided)
Le 14 Arpents - Cow (Quebec)
L'Archibuchette - Goat (Quebec) - June 27
Cheval Noir de L'Isle - Cow(Quebec) -June 27
Fleuron - Cow (Quebec) - June 27
Grey Owl - Goat (Quebec)
Thea Bandaged Cheddar -Sheep (Quebec)
Le Pizy (Quebec)
Louis D'Or - Cow (Quebec) - June 27
Perron/4 yr - Cow (Quebec)- June 27
Bercail - Sheep (Quebec) - June 27
Bete-a-Seguin - Cow (Quebec) - June 27
Delice de Bourgogne (France)
Comté 18 mth - Cow (France) - June 27
Comté 24 mth - Cow (France)
Comté 36 mth - Cow (France)
Cote d'Or - Cow (France) - June 27
Brebirousse - Sheep (France) - June 27
Bonde D'Antan - Goat (France) - June 27
Crottin Germain Coque - Goat (France) - June 27
Reblochon de Savoie (France) - June 27
Burrata di Puglia (France) - Presales - 1 Left June 27
Cremeux de Jura (France) -
Dutch Mimolette (Netherlands)
Pont L'Eveque (France)
Tomme de Savoie (France)
Bleu D'Auvergne (France)
Coeur de Savoie (France)
St Nectaire (France) June 27
Keep it Cheesy!