Cheese Information

Etorki

Origin

Pyrenees-Atlantique, France

Milk Type

Pasteurized

Animal

Sheep

Rind

Natural

Firmness

Firm

About

Etorki (meaning “origin” in the Basque language) is a firm sheep milk cheese made in the Pays Basque, the French portion of the semi-autonomous Basque Region that overlaps the border with Spain. This cheese is made from pasteurized milk from the native Manech ewes and in a style that has been made by shepherds in the Pyrenees for so long the origins of the recipe are lost to history…. at least 4000 years.

Taste Notes

Etorki has a rusty hued rind, dotted with small bumps from the forming molds used during pressing, and still visible despite seven weeks of aging and careful brushing. The interior is a uniform white, with nearly no eyes or breaks in the paste. When eaten the paste will break with minimal effort cracking as opposed to crumbling and yields a firm and satisfying consistency. Etorki has a sweet smell to it, hinting at the cooked caramel flavours hidden inside the pressed and aged sheep milk curd.

Pairings

Try this cheese with local Bayonne ham and a boule, or with a dark stone fruit compote, like cherry or plum. Etorki works very well with both with chardonnay style wines, as well as riojas. However, if you want a truly authentic experience, try to find some Txacoli (SHA-col-ee), the traditional, slightly sparkling Basque white wine.

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