Beaufort Aoc Alpage
(Imported Cheeses: France)
Of all the Beaufort varieties available -- d'Hiver (winter), d'Ete (summer) and d'Alpage -- the last is considered the most flavorful, as it is artisan-made at the highest elevations in Rhone-Alpes mountain chalets, and the Beaufort cows are taken up even higher to graze on Alpine flowers and grasses. Beaufort's silky, semi-firm paste has a few cracks but rarely any eyes (unlike its close cousins, Gruyere and Comte) and an occasional tyrosine crunch. Its flavors are smooth and complex with floral, herbal, caramel notes, and a finish that is reminiscent of well-aged beef. Ideal for food-service applications, such as fondue, melting or cooking, but it should not be overlooked as one of the finest table cheeses. Raw milk; AOC.