Day 11: Abondance
Today’s cheese has a tell-tale sign: it’s one of two large pressed and cooked AOP cheeses whose side rind is concave. Abondance has similar flavors to its cousin Beaufort. Its main difference is its size (smaller in all dimensions than Beaufort) and of course its provenance or terroir. Like its Haute-Savoyard cousin, it reflects the common practices of making huge cheeses with relatively less moisture content to preserve the product and facilitate its transportation.
If it isn’t immediately obvious, I love the cheeses from France’s alpine region. (Although I seem to love most French cheeses.) At some level, they all look the same, but the range of flavors—from the terroir and the skill of the affineur—is so varied that they are always worth tasting and almost always delicious.