Fromage Friday: Pavin d’Auvergne

Today I had my first fromagerie-related panic. I stood in line for at least 20 minutes with my mind on a tomme de pyrenees before I remembered that I’d already highlighted a tomme noir, and though “I should step up my cheese game.” With only one older gentleman in front of me (ordering refills of gloopy fromage frais and some munster), I frantically scanned the cheese case for words I didn’t recognize, and landed on Pavin.

Un quart.

In an attempt to learn more about this cheese, I’ve gotten an encylopedia-esque library book. IT’S AMAZING. I’ll be scouring the book salon for my own cheese book in a week’s time.

Pavin d’Auvergne, a cow’s cheese.
Made by: Fromagerie Guillaume, Montaigut le Blanc
Hails from: Auvergne, a central province of France south of Burgundy. I would bet it has more cows than people, because it’s mondo rural. I looked up the fromger’s town–it has 601 people in it.
Cheese family: pressed and “raw,” or pressée non cuites. This is one of six cheese families, according to this book. This is very similar to Saint-Nectaire, but apparently not so common.
Background: Semi-soft white cheese, with an orange rind that stands out a mile in a hurried cheese search. It has a definite nutty flavor, even for less-than-refined palates. Not too strong, but definitely a little different.
Can I eat the rind? Not sure, but I’d go with no. Messes with the flavor.
Serve it with: I bet it would be amazing on a farmhouse-style cheese platter with mushrooms and other similar sides. Or in a quiche with earthy root vegetables, tomatoes and red peppers.

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