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Tete de Moine

Tete de Moine
Mike Lehmann / CC BY-SA 3.0
  • Made from cow's milk

  • Country of origin: Switzerland

  • Region: Bernese Jura, Canton of Bern

  • Family: Swiss Cheese

  • Type: semi-hard

  • Fat content: 50%

  • Vegetarian: no

  • Producers: Various

Tete de Moine AOP is a semi-hard, unpasteurized cow's milk cheese from Switzerland. It is classified as Alpine cheese or a Swiss-type chees, and was initially produced more than eight centuries ago by the monks.  It is believed that the monks staying at Moutier, the mountainous zone of the Bernese Jura in Canton of Bern, manufactured this cheese. And hence the cheese takes the name 'Tete de Moine', meaning 'Monk's Head'.

It is aged for a minimum of 2½ months on a small spruce plank and is typically paired with a dry, white wine. The reddish-brown crust of the cheese is grainy, moist and lubricated and the yellow-to-ivory-coloured paste is homogeneous, sticky and supple.  To enjoy the best taste, a tool called 'Girolle' was invented in 1982. A scraper attached to the central axis of the apparatus makes scrapping the cheese easier!

Tete de Moine proves to be the best companion for Crisp White Wines such as Pinot Grigio.

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