Matt Caputo is always on the hunt for cheeses that can appease the tastes of more than one crowd- the advanced cheese pros, the open-minded moderates, and the timid beginners. Enter Lou Bergier Pichin, a creamy, delicate cow’s milk cheese.
It may look like a French tomme style cheese, it may even sound like a French cheese, but this beauty hails from Piedmont, one of our favorite region’s for cheese. The paste is more moist than tomme style cheeses and the flavor is less barnyard-y, which means it will be more appealing to new fans of artisan cheese.
Cheesemaker Mario Fiandino coagulates his wheels with raw cow’s milk and thistle flower rennet. While most vegetal rennet’s produce a slight bitterness in the finish of the cheese, Fiandino has eliminated the rennet’s flavor and we are left with only buttery, full flavors. This name translates to “the little shepherd” in the Occitan- a Piemontese dialect. The unpressed curds are set and aged 60 days. The end result is a velvety textured paste with many small eyes and a delicious rind that only adds more pleasure to the experience. Oh my, the rind! The rind on this cheese is absolutely lovely. The texture, the flavor, the nuance, don’t trim the rind, please! Our wheels are in our cheese cave, gaining even more depth and flavor from the nature of the cave and some good ol’ TLC from our affineur, Antonia.
Serve this cheese simply; crusty bread, fresh fruit, even salumi. We love this cheese before a meal when the palette is uninhibited by any previous dishes and eager for delicate flavors. It gives fruit a nice creamy balance and won’t overpower any salumi you may choose to serve it with.
What wine would we pair with it, you ask? We’ve been toying with many medium bodied reds and have not been disappointed.
There you have it, a cheese for any and all. Its approachable creaminess welcomes the beginners and its nuances lure in the pros. Go forth, enjoy your summer with our newest love, Lou Bergier.