Terroir is the idea that everything has a distinct “taste of place,” and that the grass, hay, flowers, or other flora that are incorporated into the milk that makes cheese from a certain region maintains distinct characteristics about that landscape that you’re actually able to taste within the cheese. That idea rings particularly true with Tomme Aux Fleurs, a special cow’s milk creation from Switzerland that is literally coated with herbs from the place it was born.
Firm and buttery, with a rind encrusted with a blend of ten different herbs and flowers from the Alsatian region of Switzerland, this original cheese is a mellow, milky delight with an interesting backstory.
Many of the Swiss cheeses you know and love–Gruyère, Comte–have AOP designations, which means they stand out in the world of fromage for being timeless classics that adhere to strict rules about how they’re made. Until recently, these famous creations made up the majority of the Swiss cheeses that we enjoy here in the U.S. But a new trend has started to take over–small, local producers are beginning to export their original cheeses to international markets.
That’s how we got our hands on Tomme Aux Fleurs, a beauty created by the maker Swiss Mathier, a younger, up-and-coming producer compared to the centuries-old institutions that generate some of the world’s most popular Swiss cheeses. Traditionally, producers of this size without those AOP distinctions would focus on sharing their cheeses locally, where they would gain their own distinct notoriety and popularity. But why not start sharing them with the world? That’s exactly what Swiss Mathier and some similar small makers began to do.
As demand for AOP-desginated cheeses began to wane in the U.S., local producers found their niche, taking the plunge to export their local favorite across the Atlantic and introduce them to a brand new market, with some delightful success. With an emphasis on singular and distinctive terroir, cheeses like Tomme Aux Fleurs are now bringing a taste of the Alsatian countryside right to the door of American cheese lovers.
Don’t miss out on getting a bite of this tasty tomme–with a firm yet pudgy paste and a mild snackability, plus a gentle herbal tang, it’s an eye-catching addition to any cheese board. We also recommend trying it with some tomato jam and a hearty cracker for a monger-approved bite that tastes just like a brick oven pizza.
Want to try more Swiss stunners? We’ve got all your favorites and some new additions right here.