So as some of you know, I recently came back from another visit in Paris; this one ended up with a double twist. I got engaged AND a volcano eruption in Iceland had forced us to be "stuck" in Paris for another 8 days. Who am I to argue with the airline? Actually, I was going to call and argue when someone from the other room mumbled something about Aperitifs and crêpes. I forgot the airline’s number promptly and used my time wisely; between the Escoffier cooking school at the Ritz Paris and the cheese markets. I must have looked like a mad man documenting every mold, shape and color of cheese. What can I say?
France is cheese heaven and they sure know their stuff. It is quite evident when you walk into a store that the entire display is arranged for people who know cheese. A normal person would know what the sign “Affine” means, and how to choose a Crottin by its mold color to get the desired texture and flavor. They know they can get their Valençay with or without ash, or that the rough rind on the Mimolette is better than the smooth one, even though it was achieved by the use of mites. They know to stop, look, open the paper, sniff the Camembert and then press it with their fingers to feel if its ripe. It's an upside down world where Tommes and Comtés rule sandwiches and YES, you can add to your coffee that milk that says "Cru" on it (raw), heck you don't even need to wait 60 days for raw cheese to eat it.
Here are a few of the gazillion photos I took to feast the eyes on. Let me know if you want to see more!