Milk: Raw cow's milk
Location: Franche-Comte, France
Comte was the first cheese to be cooperatively made, a practice dating back to the 12th century. Our Comte is matured by Rivoire Jacquemin in Lons le Saunier, Franche-Comte.
They keep their young cheeses warm for the first week of their maturation to awaken the propionic bacteria which develop warm nutty flavours in the aged cheese. The cheeses then move to cool, slow-ripening temperatures for long maturation. The old and young batches are interspersed in the store rooms so, when washing cheeses, the younger ones benefit from the rind cultures of the older wheels.
We select our cheese personally with a view to aging them to between 18 to 24 months. At this stage, the texture is lightly crystalline and they have a caramel, buttery quality that evolves into a rich hazelnut flavour.