Saturday, April 2, 2016


Saint-Remacle de Wavreumont is a monastery in eastern Belgium close to Germany.  It was built in 1950 as a replacement, of sorts, for the Saint-Remacle Abbey which now lays in ruins nearby. The structure, itself, is a very modern appearing building and the twenty Benedictine monks who live there devote themselves to physical work and worship.   In 1996 when local cheese maker, Mark Rosen, requested the monastery's ancient Trappist cheese recipe it was freely given by the monks.  The cheese was no longer being made there and the Benedictines considered it a gift to the local community economy.  The cheese is now marketed as an "homage" to the monastic traditions.

Today Le Wavreumont (vahv-ru-manh) is made by Mr. Rosen at Fromagerie des Ardennes in the French-speaking community of Werbomont.  The milk is sourced from Pie Noire cows at three local dairies in Montbeliard, Normande using renowned lush east Belgian pasturelands.  The cheese is certified organic and not pasteurized.

Wavreumont is a three inch tall, eight inch diameter wheel that is "cornered" at the bottom but rounded at the top.  The wheel has a natural sandy tan-colored, brine-rubbed rind.  The paste is semi-soft pale yellow when made from winter milk (hay) and orange-yellow otherwise when the cows are pasture fed.  It has irregular small eyes throughout.

The cheese has aromas of peanuts, cream, and egg.  The flavors display a fresh, rich, sweet creaminess with a touch of yeastiness.  The finish shows nuts, grass, and butter.

While wheat beers are recommended for this Belgian cheese, Alsatian white wines and most Pinot Noirs should work here.    

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