Search Engine Inquiry 1: Cheapest flights from Seattle to Zurich.
Search Engine Inquiry 2: How heavy is a wheel of L’Etivaz.
- Northeast of Lake Geneva, Switzerland
- Raw Cow Milk
- Style: Firm Natural Rind Alpine
- Smells: Barnyard, Fresh Milk
- Texture: Crystallization, Semi-firm
- Taste: Herbs, Toasted Nuts, Floral, Leek, Hay
- Finish: Beef Broth, Honey
Close your eyes. Take a deep breathe in. Slowly let it out. Now imagine you just arrived in Switzerland. You are walking amongst the wildflower covered pastures of the Swiss alps, where the cattle are heard, by their giant bell necklaces, grassing nearby quaint farmhouses waiting for their milk to be transformed into a solidified elixir…also known as the cheese, L’Etivaz. This Swiss raw cow's milk cheese is the essence of traditional cheese making. Once made under the name Gruyere, yet upon the arrival of new regulations (about a century ago), seventy-two farmers decided it was time to be sliced off the Gruyere wheel. This wedging lead to a new name, and gave the dairies freedom to continue practicing traditional techniques. These passionate cheesemakers use traditional rennet to curdle the, just out of the utter, milk in antique copper cauldrons that are hung over a wood burning fire. Once the curds are gathered into a cheese cloth, they are drained and formed into heavy wooden wheels that are pressed and salted. After about a week at the chalet, all seventy-two creameries send these precious wheels to a cellar, where the wheels are brined, rubbed, turned, and then allowed rest for at least 6 months. As noted in my Gruyere 1655 post, Gruyere is my desert island cheese…that being stated though, L’Etivaz holds a rather large piece of my heart. This well weathered cheese is a touch denser with an overall more earthy personality than the 1655. Those beautifully enticing fields of wildflowers I dream of frolicking through, bring a bouquet of floral and grassy notes, along with a rich brothy and nutty aspect. Thus...
Tune to Ella Fitzgerald and Louis Armstrong, while enjoying this taste of history with a fellow adventurer, a crispy piece of bread, and a spoonful of applesauce/apple butter. And, ‘dream a little dream with me’...