Taste every fromage in France? Challenge accepted!

Taste every fromage in France? Challenge accepted!

Jennifer Greco is determined to taste every French fromage!

Loulabelle's FrancoFiles episode 90 - click here to listen

Guest: Jennifer Greco

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Jennifer Greco has tasted over 460 French cheeses! I looooooved chatting to her so much as fromage is one of my favourite foods. She says there is a cheese for every mood and eats cheese every day.  After moving to France with her husband 20 years ago, Jennifer discovered a love for fromage and took on the challenge to try every French cheese there is! The current number of French cheeses is between 1600-1800 so she has a few to go!

Initially Jennifer and her husband honeymooned in France and soon after bought a house in the Languedoc-Roussillon region which was intended to be a holiday house. But after the 9/11 attacks in New York their work situation changed significantly in the US and the decision to move to France full time was made. They have lived in a few regional areas (including Normandy with all that fabulous butter to turn into cheese!) and now live in Paris.

For the last 18 years Jennifer has explored French food, culture, wine and cheese through her blog.  She also wrote a ten-part series about her journey to become a French citizen.

Jennifer has such a wonderful knowledge of fromage and listening to her talk about different cheeses, the notes in their flavours, the complexity of the layers that reveal themselves during the eating of a cheese, I began to have a newfound respect for fromage. I’ve always loved fromage, but now after talking to Jennifer I want to learn more about the different cheeses, how they’re made, how to serve them, how to ask in the country markets for particular important things that should be considered when buying cheeses. Jennifer mentioned one question that should be asked at a market when purchasing fromage, when would the cheese you’re buying be good for eating? If the cheese is going to be eaten in three days’ time for example, ask if the cheese will be good for that time, as some cheeses like a brie will continue to ripen and will have a timeframe in which it is best to eat. I learned a lot just in this chat with Jennifer, such as that the Comté cheese makers in France have got together and created a flavour wheel identifying 83 notes and flavours in that cheese. Everything from grasses, herbs, nuts, salt… but 83 of them! Incredible!

Jennifer is now not just a French cheese lover but also an educator. She spends her days eating and writing about fromage for various publications, also offering gourmet food tours and French cheese workshops. If you’re wanting to experience some different less common French cheeses, Jennifer recommends getting out into the regions. Even catching a train an hour out of Paris can provide a market that is very different to the city.

Jennifer’s top tip for enjoying cheese is not to get too worried about the rules, except that cheese should be served at room temperature. Just jump in and enjoy any cheese, try new things, don’t get too concerned about the wine pairings and don’t overcrowd the cheeseboard. In France cheese is not overwhelmed with fancy crackers or too many accompaniments, rather cheese is served with fresh baguette. Parfait je pense!

Jennifer’s passion for fromage was so evident in this chat and it was a little contagious as straight after I headed to the South Melbourne market near me and bought enough cheese that I will be swimming in it for quite a while!

Jennifer’s links

Jennifer’s blog – Chez Loulou – A Taste of Life in France

Jennifer’s new cheese tasting experience
Jennifer’s Instagram and Facebook


Jennifer couldn’t just choose one recipe to recommend so below are links for all her faves!

Croque Monsieur



Tarte Tatin


L’Imperatrice – Vanille Fraise

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