Mont d’Or PDO Baby is a 450g version of our Mont d’Or. It is a soft, creamy, runny cheese named after the Golden Mountain in the French Alps. There are two camps when it comes to this wonderful alpine cheese. You can either go French where it is called Mont d’Or PDO, or Swiss where it is Vacherin Mont d’Or. We prefer the French variety and so this is the one we stock when we can.
Mont d’Or is only made between 15th August and the 15th March, so we are only allowed to sell it between 10th September and 10th April. However, it reaches its absolute peak between November and March. The reason why it is only made in the winter is because this is when the cows have come down from their alpine pastures to shelter from the snow. The rest of the year their milk goes to make the large wheels of Comté which are produced in the same geographical area.
Mont d’Or is protected by its PDO status which states that it must be unpasteurised Montbéliarde or Simmental cows’ milk. It must also be made in the Jura region. This is the area of the Alps between France and Switzerland. The cheeses are all made by hand and they are so soft that they have a belt of spruce bark wrapped around their edges to stop them from collapsing. This belt is slightly smaller in diameter than the cheese which gives the bloomy rind a unique undulating appearance. The boxes that the cheeses come in are also made from spruce.
The cheese itself is rich and creamy with its rind adding a delicious tang. It is absolutely wonderful when baked in the oven. Simply make a slit in its rind and drizzle it with olive oil. Then add a sprig of rosemary and possibly a garlic clove and pop it in the oven. Then just serve it with hunks of crusty bread, slice of apple, carrot sticks and a glass of Gewurztraminer from the Alsace