Essex Street Cheese Company is dedicated to providing impeccable wheels of classic European cheeses to the United States. Among their collection is a young Comte made by a dairy cooperative nestled in the Jura Mountains in Eastern France. These massive rounds of cheese (weighing in at approximately ninety pounds) start off as curds the size of hazelnuts which are cooked and then pressed, creating Comte's characteristically firm texture. The wheels are then salted periodically in the following weeks before being transferred to the cavernous forts of Saint Antoine where they are aged for over a year under the care of a master affineur (cheese ager).
Made entirely with raw milk from Montbeliarde cows, this Comte is profoundly rich with an intoxicatingly long finish. The color of the paste fluctuates with the seasons, varying from a brilliant ivory to a deep yellow, yet remains toothsome and dense regardless of the time of year. The thin, beige rind traps a bevy of flavors inside the wheel; often lively notes that hint at perfectly baked potatoes, roasted hazelnuts, pools of melted butter and the occasional burst of green onions and sweet cream.
Farm / Company: Essex Street Cheese Co.
Affineur: Fort St. Antoine
Region: Jura Mountains
Milk Type: Cow
Milk Treatment: Raw
Aging: 13 - 18 months
Size(s): 75-85 pound wheel