I met the son of a French count at a book launch last night. When I confessed to him that I was having a little love affair with French cheese he seemed somewhat suspicious-he demanded to know then, what was “the King of Cheese?” Imagine how thrilled I was to be able to respond, “why, Epoisses, of course.” He nodded sagely, and concurred, “yes, you are in love with French cheese.” I almost felt as though this was a test sent by the cheese Gods-I have never randomly met the son of a French count before, I have never randomly discussed cheese-French or not-at book launches, and certainly, the “king of cheese” has never come up in random conversation. Oh cheese Gods! I am but your humble servant-I hope you are pleased with my work here.
With that hearty invocation in mind, I turn my eyes-and my Google search button, to Pierre Robert cheese. This is a pasteurized cow cheese from France in Seine-et-Marne. Pierre Robert is only made by the French cheesemaking company Rouzaire. A relatively new cheese on the scene, it was created when Robert Rouzaire and his friend Pierre began to tire of their regular cheese they produced called Brillat-Savarin (to be reviewed tomorrow) so they took some Brillat Savarin-a triple creme cheese and aged it longer in their caves, thus enabling it to become more mature and intense in flavour (I like the sounds of that) and EVEN MORE MELTINGLY RICH-wow, if this cheese is even more meltingly rich than what some call the sexiest cheese alive-this has to to be good. They named this new melty yumminess Pierre-Robert, which reminds me, I really must develop and name a cheese after myself.
I do quite a bit of looking around for cheese facts every morning from several different sites-interestingly I keep finding the exact same phrase to describe this cheese and that is: “appeals to anyone craving pure and utter decadence.” Now my question is, “like, who doesn’t?”
As I am clearly one who does crave pure and utter decadence I turn my little eyes to my wedge here on my desk. It looks like a Brie to me. The bloomy rind is snowy white with fungus (mmmm) and the interior looks quite wet and sticky, almost like whipped cream that congealed overnight on a plate after that fabulous party and you were just too wrecked to clean it up. The smell surpises me a little-it actually smells like goat or sheep to me-even though it’s cow, that’s weird. It is a little more pungent than a starter brie, but it did have time to think about life in those caves, so perhaps it’s emerged a little deeper and intense-like so many of us.
Totally not what I was expecting-first, the texture-it’s so soft I actually had to scoop it out with a spoon, it really is the consistency of a thick whipped cream, and just melts before it even touches your mouth. It’s extremely intense in salt and ammonia, and there is a bitter aftertaste along with an astringent bite. This cheese tastes mildly of vomit-and I actually mean that in a nice way- do you know how sometimes your vomit is kind of yummy tasting? It’s like kissing the hot girl late at night who’s just been sick and now is having a smoke and then kisses you. Strangely, I keep eating it though-what the hell does this say about me? As for all those “craving pure and utter decadence,” um, I think you would be seriously on glue if you thought you would find it here. This is an intense, hard core cheese experience, I would only recommend it for the most intrepid, and certainly not for the novice cheese lover looking for a little decadence, be WARNED.
Pierre Robert, I give you a 3 out of 5, which includes a bonus mark for amazing texture, but deducts marks for extreme raunch as well as lulling me into a false sense of security with promises of “utter decadence.”