Le Gruyère AOP
Le Gruyère AOP (or simply Gruyere) is hard Swiss cheese named after the Swiss town of Gruyères in Fribourg. It is traditional, creamery, unpasteurised cheese. In 2001, Gruyère gained the appellation d'origine contrôlée (AOC), and the appellation d'origine protégée (AOP) in 2013. The cheese-making process of Gruyère AOP is strictly specified, and milk producers, cheese-makers and affineurs (maturers) follow it. The natural, rusty brown rind of Gruyère is hard and dry. The cheese is darker yellow than Emmental, but the texture is more dense and compact. Gruyère is sweet and a little salty. When young, it is creamy and nutty, but after maturation, the texture becomes earthy and complex with small cracks. A completely aged cheese (5 months to a year) has small cracks and a grainy texture.