pay homage to the cheese pope in switzerland

June 26th, 2009

courtesy of craig lee for the san francisco chronicle

courtesy of the san francisco chronicle


This month, Gourmet profiles Rolf Beeler, dubbed the Swiss “Cheese Pope.”  Beeler is a finisher who works with artisanal cheesemakers around Switzerland to cultivate, age, and coax their products into something transcendent.  As the magazine mentions, French Laundry in California and Gramercy Tavern in New York both import his cheeses.  And thanks to the cutting-edge buyers at Whole Foods, you can serve Rolf Beeler’s Emmental and Gruyère at your own dinner parties.  Trace any of these imports back to its root and you’ll find a farmer who can tell you the name of the cow from whence it came.


Just as lobsters taste better after a day spent on the Nantucket beaches, there’s no better way to appreciate a cheese’s terroir than after a meal accompanied by Swiss wines in the heart of the Alps.  The Michelin-starred Jasper at the Palace Luzern and the Jungfrau Brasserie at the Victoria-Jungfrau in Interlaken both feature Beeler’s cheese.  The chefs always include Beeler creations in their dazzling cheese displays as well as their recipes.  Even if you managed to resist the fondue, you can’t - and shouldn’t – decline a nibble of Hoch Ybrig after dinner.

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