vendredi 9 avril 2010
Tour de France: Stop Deux
So, we had no sooner announced our Tour de France when we just got too busy to worry about cheese. Seriously. There were weeks when the only thing in our fridge was the remainder of a bag of parmesan. (Well, the only cheese. I don't think we can go 24 hours without some kind of yogurt.) Too busy to eat cheese?!?!?! Yeah, it's sad.
But today we're back on track with this lovely, creamy fromage from Burgundy. For anyone just joining us, Josh and I have been doing some armchair traveling--or plutôt kitchen table traveling--by eating our way around the cheeses of France. Today's cheese is a brillat savarin, a sort of upscale version of brie.
I think I cheated by getting this brand, Reflets de France--it's a ginormous company that specializes in producing "authentic local products" from all over France. If you think to yourself, "hey, I'd like to get some __________, the typical dish of _________ region," chances are, you'll find some from Reflets de France, sold in your grocery store. Why do I feel like it's cheating? Well, there's just something not-so-local about a national chain. Plus, I feel like I should do a bit more of the research on my own to find out what the regional specialties are across France--walking into the grocery store and seeing them all catalogued in the same yellow labels is just too easy.
But back to this cheese.
It was really creamy--almost like a brie crossed with whipped cream. Apparently it can be hard to match a brie to red wine because the mushroomy flavor of the brie will bring out the tannins in the wine and make it taste sour. Lucky for us, instead of our standby bottle of two-euro-fifty bordeaux, we had popped open a bottle of hard cider made by Josh's brother--brewed with clementines and I think pomegranate (right, Ben?) and the PERFECT accompaniment for this cheese. Wikipedia, my go-to sommelier, also recommends champagne.
And now that we've discussed the cheese, time to talk about the region. All I knew about Burgundy before is that it's a color and the home of the Burgundians of Nibelungenlied fame. Not particularly useful bits of knowledge--oh, and beef bourguignon, brought to our fair shores by Julia Child.
And since today's Tour de France stop and subsequent internet research, I know. . . not much more. Sounds like Burgundy has had great wines and a really complicated and tangled history. SO, Burgundy: good wine. Also home to Dijon, where the mustard comes from. Probably has lots of chateaux, but I didn't find many pictures. All in all, I would say the informational aspect of today's Tour de France stop is sadly lacking. Fortunately, the cheese aspect is great.