Over the past year Executive Chef Martin Kouprie has been making his own organic cheeses, in fact, 20 different varieties. He has found a high quality milk supply that is local and consistently available. We were invited to sample some cheeses paired with fine wines, chosen for us by Pangaea’s Sommelier John LeBihan.
Before the actually tasting, (ever the teacher) Chef Kouprie introduced us to several of Pangaea’s cheeses and demonstrated his art.
We learned that Pangaea cheeses are made using organic whole pasteurized milk (16 liters/round of cheese) and aged 4 to 6 weeks in an aging area. Pangaea uses a modified refrigerator which maintains the optimum humidity and temperature conditions required for the aging process.
The Art of Serving Cheese
Peter Geary (Pangaea’s ‘other half’ and Chef Kouprie’s business partner) told us that soft rind cheese should be stored for short periods of time under a cheese dome, to allow for air circulation. If keeping the cheese for longer periods it should be wrapped in waxed paper (not cling wrap) and placed in a loose-fitting food-bag to maintain humidity and allow for air circulation. Cheese should be allowed to warm up for about half an hour before serving. This allows the flavour and aroma to develop.
Taste: Wine and Cheese Pairing
We learned that the ideal way to benefit from wine and cheese pairings was to sip a little bit of the wine first, before tasting the cheese.
The cheeses we sampled were the ‘Annex’ (like a Camembert) paired with Vineland Un-Oaked Chardonnay (Pangaea House White 2013)
‘Portlands’ (like a Valencay) paired with Tommasi Appassionato Corvina, Rondinella & Merlot 2011
‘Rosedale’ (blue veined like a Cambozola) paired with Burmester 10 Year old Tawny Port
All three cheeses were excellent. If I was forced to choose, the Cambozola would be my favorite, it was very creamy, actually buttery, just melted in your mouth, of course the excellent Port shot it up a notch or two. After the ‘Rosedale’ while still sipping our Port, Chef Kouprie brought out a lovely cheddar which had just finished the ripening process– what a beautiful way to finish the afternoon, it was like a little bite of sunshine.
Chef Kouprie is as passionate about cheese making as he is everything else in his culinary world and loves to talk to anyone interested in the process.
Sample These Wonderful Cheeses Paired with Wine Every Tuesday @ Pangaea
You can sample these wonderful cheeses at Pangaea’s bar on Tuesday afternoons (from 5:00 p.m.). Chef Kouprie will be happy to share his knowledge about Pangaea’s house made cheeses and sommelier John will help you choose the ideal wine. 3 house made cheeses, a 6 oz. glass of matched wine and insight into the world of cheese making – all for $19.00.
Pangaea was recently invited to join the Toronto Cheese Guild. They accepted!