Fromagerie Fritz Kaiser, Noyan, QC
Since it's Mardi Gras, Fat Tuesday, Shrove Tuesday...i.e., the day before Lent begins and traditionally the last chance to stuff ourselves with fat and sugar, here are some photos from Fromagerie Fritz Kaiser in Noyan, Quebec, where we stopped today after doing some errands.
This fromagerie has won many awards, and we agree: they make some of the best cheeses (from both cow and goat's milk) we've ever tasted. It's just north of the US-Canadian border, and we used to stop there often when visiting our family on Isle la Motte, the northernmost of the Lake Champlain islands. Recently, the fromagerie has built a new store on the front of the facility where the cheese is made. The barns and the cows are right beside it. The prices for the cheeses are much less there than in Montreal stores, and you can taste anything you want to try.
In the foreground, above, rounds of goat brie and chevrechon, a soft surface-ripened goat's milk cheese.
This is Le Douanier, which won the Canadian Grand Prix in 2004. I can't even begin to tell you how delicious it is. It's somewhat similar to Morbier; this is what Fritz Kaiser says about it:
A semi-soft cheese with a washed and brushed rind, Douanier is left to ripen for more than nine weeks. The edible vegetable ash layer that runs through the centre of the wheel symbolizes the Quebec-US border close to where the cheese is made. With its earthy aroma and organic flavour, Douanier tempts the palate with a hint of nuts and green apple.
OK. Now we're going off to the cathedral's annual Shrove Tuesday pancake-and-sausage supper. And tomorrow evening I'll be singing the Allegri Miserere, and the ashes will be on my forehead, not in my cheese.