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Saturday, September 17, 2011

Taste Workshop LCH10

On the Verge of Extinction: Alpine Beaufort
4pm Sala Liceo Scientificio

The pearl of the Savoy Alps, Beaufort is a large, hard, raw cow's milk cheese with a distinctive concave rind, now mostly produced in cooperative dairies in the lowlands. Hervé Mons, an affineur from Saint-Haon-le-Châtel and a Meilleur Ouvrier de France, will lead a tasting of cheeses from one of the last mountain producers of Beaufort, the Perret family of La Tueda. The cheeses are aged for months in caves in an old railway tunnel. You'll taste a winter Beaufort (aged for 16 months), a summer Beaufort (14 months) and an Alpine Beaufort (14 months), paired with red and white wines from Savoy, a region whose wines are undeservedly little-known.

Ready for the next class

wines from left to right:
W1 - Domaine Giachino Monfarina
W2 - Domaine Prieuré Saint Christophe Vin de Pays d'Allobrogie Altesse 2009
W3 - Domaine Giachino Persan
W4 - Domaine Prieuré Saint Christophe Mondeuse Tradition 2005

W1 - made from Jacquère (white)grapes, variety mainly found in Savoy; on lees until bottled;
W2 - made from Altesse (white) grapes, variety found mainly in Savoy; biodynamic; cold settling, lees stirring, 8 months in oak, 20% new wood; needs aging
W3 - made from Persan, another local grape variety; most aromatic of the wines in this set
W4 - made from Mondeuse, ancestor of Syrah; biodynamic, organic

Cheese notes:

  • can be different styles of cheese in same appellation
  • Co-ops blend milk produced throughout the year
  • minimum age of 6 months before you can sell cheese
  • milk is processed 2 times a day so it needs constant tasting 
  • two of the cheeses are from 2010 but different months
  • three varieties, summer, winter, alpeggio - alpeggio is made in the chalets in the Alps
Tastings starts at top of plate and goes clockwise.

Cheese #1 
- from Feb 2010, Co-op

Cheese #2
- not a Co-op, not a chalet, which is unusual
- herd is in mountains but cheese produced in valley
- large herd

Cheese #3 
- from July 2010, Summer

- Perret family near Méribel
- 2600 meter altitude
- morning and evening milking


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