Vosgienne Cow. Photo credit © Shutterstock

Most of us emerged from lockdown with, at best, a newfound knowledge of sourdough starters, but one couple in France went a step further and used le confinement to invent a whole new cheese.

When restrictions were put in place, Lionel and Laura Vaxelaire, who tend a herd of 25 Vosgienne cattle at Au Petit Gravier, their farm in Saulxures-sur-Moselotte in the Vosges département, were left with around 60 cheeses and nowhere to sell them. Dumping them in the cellar, they thought nothing more of it… until four weeks later, they discovered something rather delicious had happened.

The cheese – which had been destined to be Munster – was instantly christened Le Confiné. “It’s chalky in the centre and more refined towards the rind, a bit like Munster,” Laura told regional newspaper Vosges Matin. “Its flowery rind is white and a little speckled. Even our children appreciated it and since this cheese has endured isolation like us, its name was a given.”

Lionel and Laura. Photo credit © Au Petit Gravier, Facebook

And it has already proven popular with the locals – one said it would be great with a glass of wine with friends of an evening while another, with a slightly more adventurous palate, suggested it would be perfect dipped in chocolate for breakfast!

Le Confiné can be bought direct from the farm or at local markets, and another batch is currently self-isolating in the farm’s cellar.

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Marc Veyrat by Anaud 25 on Wikicommons

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Comté

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Roquefort by Thesupermat on Wikicommons

Roquefort

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Want to be inspired by more French foodie experiences and enjoy classic French food, wine and recipes? Head to our sister website, Taste of France, here.

From France Today magazine

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