Salut: Praise cheeses: 10 grand fromages from across B.C. – Sept. 20, 2014


By Joanne Sasvari with wine matches by Anthony Gismondi

Talk about a warm a�� perhaps slightly too warm a�� welcome. Ofri and Ofer Barmor fled conflict in Israel only to find themselves caught in the wildfires that roared through the Okanagan in 2003. As flames raged around their brand new cheesery with its herd of goats, their neighbours, perfect strangers until then, came to their rescue by adopting the animals for the duration. It was a memorable beginning to what has become a cherished local business. All the cheeses at Carmelis are made with goat milk from their own herd and range from the light, fresh Chevry to hard-aged cheeses including Gruyere and nutty, spicy blue Goatgonzola. They also offer irresistible goat milk gelato.

What to try: Chevry, fresh goat cheese in plain, dill and onion, or Provence flavours.

Anthony Gismondia��s wine match: Clean fresh and aromatic Sauvignon Blanc is the classic pairing with chA?vre and a star value at $11 is the Santa Rita Sauvignon Blanc 120 2013 from Chile.

himalaya himplasia price in india Poplar Grove Cheese, Penticton

www.poplargrovecheese.ca

Gitta Pederson and her cheese makers produce small batches of quality cheeses that have an almost cultlike following. Her cheesery, which opened in 2002, was once part of Poplar Grove Winery; in 2007, the two businesses went their separate ways, even though they still share a name. Poplar Grove only produces four varieties of European-style cowsa�� milk cheese. They include a decadent double-cream Camembert, the complex Harvest Moon Washed Rind and the powerful Tiger Blue. If you see one, pick it up a�� they sell out fast.

What to try: Tiger Blue, a richly veined and intensely flavourful aged blue cheese.

Anthony Gismondia��s wine match: Sweet and unctuous works here. A fine local late harvest pick is Clos du Soleil Saturn 2013 from Keremeos in the Similkameen Valley, $28.

Upper Bench Winery & Creamery, Penticton

www.upperbench.ca/cheese

Gavin (the winemaker) and Shana (the cheese maker) Miller met while they were both working with Poplar Grove and soon combined their passion for each other with their passion for wine and cheese. In 2011, they bought Upper Bench, where Gavin makes complex cool-climate wines and Shana crafts eight different cheeses from local cowsa�� milk. (They go beautifully together, naturally.) Among them are the creamy U & Brie, buttery semi-soft Gold, a surface-ripened blue called Grey Baby and the full-flavoured, stiltonlike King Cole.

What to try: The surface-ripened Upper Bench Gold.

buy pills Anthony Gismondia��s wine match: Riesling and its intense flavours are required to take on the dried herbs and rich flavours of this cheese and our choice is the fruit driven Quailsa�� Gate Dry Riesling 2013, $17, from the Okanagan Valley.

The Farm House Natural Cheeses, Kent/Agassiz

www.farmhousecheeses.com

Unlike most craft cheese makers, who specialize in a handful of products made from one kind of milk, Debra Amrien-Boyes seems to do it all. Cowa��s milk, goata��s milk; fresh, aged; soft, semi-soft, hard; brie, blue; you name it and she probably makes it, and makes it exceptionally well. In fact, shea��s among only a handful of North American cheese makers to be inducted into the prestigious French Cheese Guild. While Vancouver cheese shops and farmera��s markets carry her most popular products, ita��s worth the trek out to Agassiz to visit the familya��s herd of Guernsey and Brown Swiss cows and to check out some of her less well-known products, such as the cloth-bound cheddar or the creamy fresh quark thata��s essential for European-style pastries. They also sell goata��s milk, small-batch cultured butter, cheese curds, crA?me fraA�che and more. Bring a cooler, and your appetite.

What to try: The luxurious and slightly tangy triple-cream brie-style Lady Jane.

buy pills Anthony Gismondia��s wine match: accupril cozaar norco no prescription This rich, creamy, decadent cheese requires a wine of similar attributes and our match is showy, bright Wolf Blass Gold Label Chardonnay 2013, $23, from Adelaide Hills, Australia.

Golden Ears Cheesecrafters, Maple Ridge

cheesecrafters.ca

The Davison family a�� parents Kerry and Lynn and daughters Emma and Jenna (the cheese maker) a�� opened the Fraser Valleya��s newest artisan cheese making facility just a few years ago, to instant raves. They produce a variety of soft and semi-soft cheeses from milk that comes from Kerrya��s brothera��s herd of Jersey cows, as well as a truly luscious butter. Both the Gouda and Havarti come in a variety of flavours, plus they make a marvellously melty Emmental and savoury Cheddar, perfect for grilled cheese or mac a��na�� cheese. In fact, you can try both at the on-site bistro A�A�A�a�� and while youa��re there, be sure to visit their shop, which sells a variety of local products.

What to try: Neufchatel, a rich, tangy, spreadable cream cheese, served either plain or loaded with herbs and garlic.

Anthony Gismondia��s wine match: Fluffy Neufchatel is another candidate for an aromatic, white Sauvignon Blanc, this time from cool New Zealand. Our choice Twin Islands Sauvignon Blanc 2013, $19, from Marlborough.

Moonstruck Cheese, Salt Spring Island

www.moonstruckcheese.com

Therea��s something special about Salt Spring Island a�� ita��s in the air, maybe, or the water a�� that lends itself to wonderful foodstuffs, like the gorgeous cheeses from Moonstruck. Julia and Susan Grace have been producing cheeses from the rich, fragrant organic milk of their own herd of Jersey cows since 1998. Julie is the (self-taught) cheese maker, who creates dreamy and complex ash-ripened Camembert and semi-soft cheeses, as well as a number of pleasantly pungent blues. Drop by their tiny shop for a tasting a�� and if the owners arena��t there, just leave your money in the honour box.

What to try: The delicate yet strong Baby Blue.

Anthony Gismondia��s wine match: Blue cheese usually requires wine with some power and we are happy to recommend a late bottle vintage port to rein it in. Our match is Taylor Fladgate Late Bottled Vintage 2008, $26 from the Douro Valley, Portugal.

Salt Spring Island Cheese Company

www.saltspringcheese.com

If you live in B.C., youa��ve undoubtedly had one of David Wooda��s creamy chA?vres a�� they are a beautiful part of any cheese board. He tops fresh, soft goat cheese with flavourings that range from pesto to edible flowers to truffles. Hea��s been selling his cheeses since 1996 and today the family-run business produces mostly goat cheese and some sheepa��s milk cheese, in a range of styles that goes beyond chA?vre. They include feta, a hard sheepa��s milk cheese called MontaA�a and a handful of surface-ripened goat cheeses including the popular Juliette. If youa��re on Salt Spring, dona��t miss a visit to the lovely farm shop, where you can stop in and say hi to the happy goats.

What to try: The rich and wonderfully earthy white truffle chA?vre.

Anthony Gismondia��s wine match: Rich, earthy and savoury, white truffle chA?vre reminds us of Bolgheri and its delicious Super Tuscan blends. Our pick would be the Le Serre Nuove Della�� Ornellaia 2011, $63, from Bolgheri, Italy.

Kootenay Alpine Cheese Company, Creston

www.kootenayalpinecheese.com

Anyone whoa��s been to the alpine reaches of France, Switzerland and Italy knows mountainous terrain is the perfect landscape for exceptional cheese. And so it is here in the shadow of the Thomson Mountain range of southeastern B.C., where the Denise and Wayne Harris have their organic dairy farm and creamery. They make aged raw milk cheeses that have a distinctive sense of terroir and have gorgeously complex flavours: the semi-firm fontina-like Nostrala; Mountain Grana, which is similar to a grainy piavA�; and the firm Alpindon, which is similar to a French Beaufort.

What to try: Nutty, complex, faintly floral Alpindon.

online canadian ed meds Anthony Gismondia��s wine match: A traditional high alpine, nutty cheese with floral undertones is best served mature with a juicy, local spicy, GewA?rztraminer. Our match made in heaven is the Tinhorn Creek GewA?rztraminer 2013, $19, from the south Okanagan.

Natural Pastures Cheese Company, Courtenay

www.naturalpastures.com

By 2001, brothers Phillip, Edgar and Doug Smith were finding it hard to make a go of things on their heritage dairy farm. And so, like so many other struggling family dairy farmers across Canada, they decided to start making cheese. They hired a Swiss master cheese maker, Paul Sutter, and have never looked back. Now they produce nearly 20 different kinds of cow and water buffalo milk cheeses from Vancouver Island dairies, and have scooped up a bucket of awards along the way. Among them are their popular brie and Camembert, Dutch-style Boerenkaas, as well as the nutty, Parmesan-style hard Parmadammer.

What to try: Creamy, delicately tangy Mozzarella di Bufala.

Anthony Gismondia��s wine match: Fresh Bufala demands an equally bright, youthful, Viognier with a streak of minerality to match similar threads in the cheese. Our pick is Yalumba Y Series Viognier 2013, $18, from South Australia.

Little Qualicum Cheeseworks, Parksville

www.cheeseworks.ca

After living in Switzerland for several years, Clarke and Nancy Gourlay arrived on Vancouver Island with a new-found passion for cheese. In 2001 they began producing cheese and three years later moved to Morningstar Farm, which has become a must-visit attraction, thanks to its friendly animals, including their small herd of dairy cows, as well as a terrific gift shop and Mooberry fruit winery. They produce a number of different cowa��s milk cheeses, from the creamy fromage frais to the Monterey Jack-style flavoured a�?Jilla�? cheeses, meltables like Caerphilly and Raclette, and the firm, crumbly Bleu Claire.

What to try: Rathtrevor (named for the local park), a nutty, complex hard cheese similar to GruyA?re.

Anthony Gismondia��s wine match: We love the nutty notes in the cheese and they perfectly dovetail into the honey and hazelnut notes that flavour the Bellingham The Bernard Series Old Vine Chenin Blanc 2012, $25, from South Africa.

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