Janet’s latest for the chronicle… I’m buying goat cheese today myself. What’s on your cheese list?
Craig Lee / Special to The Chronicle
To the ever-lengthening list of reasons why I’m glad I live in the Bay Area, I’ve just added Tome de Bordeaux.
The French producers of this sublime goat cheese make only about 500 wheels each year, and the Bay Area gets far more than its share. That’s because of the friendship and strong business relationship between Tomales Bay Foods in Petaluma, the cheese’s importer, and the Jean d’Alos shop in Bordeaux, where the wheels are matured.
Until three years ago, when the shop changed hands, Jean d’Alos was owned and operated by Pascale and Jean Cazales, former cheesemakers from Toulouse. Pascale Cazales ran the shop and the aging cave underneath it. In the mid-1990s, she devised Tome de Bordeaux, inspired by a spicy sheep’s milk cheese that had once been made in the region.
The cheese originates at a cooperative dairy in the Loire Valley, where the 10-pound wheels are fashioned from pasteurized goat’s milk.