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The Year’s Most Decadent Cheese Board (We’re Pulling Out The Triple-Creams)

This month we head to Quebec and France to create the ooziest and most indulgent cheese line-up your fall nesting has ever seen.

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October is all about decadent, triple-cream cheeses for your cheese board.

October is all about decadent, triple-cream cheeses for your cheese board.

When it comes to happiness on a cheeseboard, the closer one gets to a state of butter, the closer one gets to the gates of cheese heaven.

Heading into October — the month of gathering (Thanksgiving), layering (cozy sweaters), and the return of nesting (movie marathons) — it feels like every weekend could use a nod to indulgence (who doesn’t need a velvety triple-cream cheese snack after a day in the pumpkin patch?).

Double and triple-cream styles of cheese were created in Normandy, France in the early 1900s. They were known as “cheeses of affluence” because the added cream was a luxury.  A triple-cream cheese has similar amounts of fat as you’d find in heavy cream (36 percent) — which is where the luxurious buttery flavour comes in.

And just because they’re buttery doesn’t mean these cheeses are all one-note — they have complexity and depth of flavour, be it aromas of fresh mushrooms, sour cream or full tangy, salty finishes with a sweetness that lingers long after the last bite.

Below, we’ve gathered some of our favourite things when it comes to cheeses that are oozy, silky and insanely decadent. For fun, we’re heading to both Quebec and northern France, with two Canadian and two French cheeses in the mix.

Any of them will make you the hit of the party — be it tea for two or Thanksgiving for fifteen.

Délice de Bourgogne, Fromagerie Lincet, France

Délice de Bourgogne is a creamy and decadent French cheese

Style: soft, bloomy rind, triple-cream
Milk type: Pasteurized cow
Region: Burgundy
Perfect for: Making everyone happy

Delice deBourgogne is the cheese that will disappear first at any gathering and the one that people will always ask you to write down for them. It’s as close as digging into butter as you can get. This is not a meek cheese — yes, it’s tender and yielding (when ripe the interior is so light it seems whipped), but it also has full flavours of crème-fraîche — tangy, salty and sweet on the finish.

Crack open the Chablis or the Champagne. This cheese deserves it.

Le Noble, Fromagerie du Domaine Féodal, Quebec

Le Noble is a creamy Quebec brie-style cheese

Style: soft, bloomy rind
Milk type:
Pasteurized cow
Region: 
Berthierville
Perfect for:
Last-minute drop-ins from good friends bringing bubbly

As our only non-triple cream on the list (but when ripe it will practically run off the board), the texture of La Noble is a little more supple and dense than the other cheeses. The milk is provided from a mix of Jersey and Holstein cows (Jersey milk can add a richer yellow colour to the paste) and the tender, white rind has a delicate aroma of fresh mushrooms. This type of Camembert style cheese is a specialty of cheesemakers Guy Dessureault and Lise Mercier.

You couldn’t go wrong bringing this out at dessert and serving it with your favourite artisan chocolate.

Brillat-Savarin, Ile de France, France

Saint-André is a brand of French triple crème cow's milk cheese

Style: Soft, bloomy rind, triple cream
Milk type: Pasteurized cow
Region: Ile de France, various producers
Perfect for: Creating a meal out of nothing, simply add an arugula salad and sour dough toast

Named for the French gastronome Jean-Brillat-Savarin, who wrote The Physiology Of Taste in 1825, this cheeseboard crowd-pleaser was created in the 1930s. It’s mellow, buttery and sweet with a gentle tang. You may find the exterior riper and the middle of the cheese denser with a firm, chalkier texture. Produced at several facilities, it’s available at most grocery and specialty stores and it will always save you in a last minute scramble to feed (and impress) hungry visitors.

Riopelle, Fromagerie Île-aux-Grues, Quebec

RIopelle is a triple cream brie-style cheese from Quebec

Style: Soft, bloomy-rind, triple cream
Milk type: Pasteurized cow
Region: Ile-aux-Grues
Perfect for:  Your Canadian cheese board— this is a Quebec classic

Creamy, ripe, melt-in-your-mouth: Riopelle is salty, rich and luxurious. Its texture is that of soft butter, leaving hints of mushroom and a light tang to linger on the tongue. Riopelle’s namesake is the famous Quebec painter Jean-Paul Riopelle, best known for his large, abstract, brightly coloured paintings on which he layered paint with a palette knife. Months before he died in 2002, Mr. Riopelle agreed to lend his name and artwork to the cheese label in order to promote the small, tight-knit community on the Ile-aux-Grues, where he was a resident.

TIPS FOR SERVING YOUR CHEESE

  • To enjoy your cheese to the fullest take it out of the fridge 1 hour before serving.
  • If you’re serving four cheeses together, use a different knife for each one so the flavours of, say, a bold blue, doesn’t affect the others.
  • Never overthink cheese! Serve simply with baguette, seasonal fruit and a little side of honey. Add a green salad and you’ve got dinner.

Join us every Friday afternoon for #CheeseOClock on Twitter and Instagram. We’ll keep you updated as we taste our way through the newly crowned fromage royalty.