April Cheese of the Month – Germain Langres
To the average cheese consumer, our April Cheese of the Month, Langres (LAWN-gray), may not come across as the delicate, beautiful cheese that it is. The small cylinder with the wrinkly, light orange rind and distinct barnyardy aroma is enough to scare off the less-than-adventurous cheese lover. Yep, we picked a stinker this month. Why? Because it’s absolutely DELICIOUS, and you need to try it! Originating from the Champagne-Ardenne region of France, Langres is a washed-rind cheese that is regularly bathed during its aging period with pigment from the Anatto tree, and occasionally some local Marc de Champagne. This is what gives it the slightly pungent smell and bright color. Inside though, the rich pate’s taste contradicts the way it smells. Smooth with a crumbly center, Langres will melt in your mouth, radiating complex buttery, meaty, and slightly salty flavors. There is a slight depression in the top of Langres, called a “fontaine,” where traditionally a small amount of Champagne is poured before serving. This lets it drizzle down into the cheese once you slice into it–an extra treat and beautiful presentation! Langres pairs well with your favorite bubbly. Try my personal favorite, Cave L’Aurance Cremant de Bourgogne Brut.