When I came across this cheese at the The Cheese Boutique I was informed that the “season was over”. Season? What season? I only thought there were four seasons.
But having tried Vacherine Mont D’Or I now recognize five seasons. Winter, Spring, Summer, Fall and Vacherine Mont D’Or cheese season.
This cheese is a gooder (if that is a real word). For me, it was another step up the ladder of cheese nirvana.
Vacherine Mont D’Or is only produced between August 15 and March 15, and sold between September 10 and May 10. In other words, it is a limited edition cheese and this was the last batch available from The Cheese Boutique until next year.
Vacherine Mont D’Or is a cow’s milk cheese. In 1981 it earned a classification as an AOC (Attestation of Origin) cheese. This cheese is produced in Switzerland and France in the Jura mountain region. While researching this cheese I discovered a lot of confusion about whether this cheese is of Swiss Origin or French Origin. It ends up that it is both, due to shifting political borders in the area where the cheese is made. I found a great online article which explores that subject in depth at Practically Edible.
Vacherine Mont D’Or should be served at room temperature whereby it becomes very soft. It can be eaten like a fondue. It literately oozes out of the rind. I hope you can see that in the picture.
But let’s cut to the chase. What does Vacherine Mont D’Or taste like?
Oh boy, I fell in love with this one. It has a smell that does NO justice to the taste. In fact, the smell was unpleasant to me. It’s a stinker and it smells RIPE. I’m not talking about a fruity sweet and good ripe. Nope this one smells like it’s rotten, take it to the curb, ripe.
Trust me, don’t let the smell stop you. The flavor is amazing. It is rich and smooth with a unique flavor very distant from the smell. This stuff was addicting. I ate some and it confused my palette. It smells bad, it tastes good, how can this be? Then I had to have some more, to figure it out. Then I had more, and more, and more. I didn’t want to stop.
The only thing I really figured out was that this is one fantastic cheese. This is a cheese that I would serve to guests to WOW them. They will balk at the smell and then I’ll get to watch their legs go weak as they try it. I think Vacherine Mont D’Or is a cheese that you will not forget.
Here is a point of comparison. If you’ve tried Brie then Vacherine Mont D’Or looks like Brie. It is gooey-er than Brie. It is stinkier than Brie. It is Brie’s big brother … on steriods. Vacherine Mont D’Or is Brie with balls.
Try this one next season if you get the chance.
Here is the official Vacherine Mont D’Or website.