Taste the tastiest Abondance cheese during your winter sports holiday
A winter sports holiday in Abondance is not possible without a visit to an original cheese farm. The region is known for it and from the chalet of Oasis Abondance it is only five minutes to the characteristic farm of the Girard family.
- Original cheese farm
- Taste the Abondance cheese
- Winter sport at its best
We just returned from a wonderful day of skiing in the beautiful ski resort Portes du Soleil. We made a nice round from Châtel to Avoriaz and via the slopes Grand Paradis to the Swiss Champéry. Tired but satisfied we head towards our lovely chalet in Chapelle d'Abondance. Time to relax. With a glass of wine and a piece of cheese on the terrace to reminisce. This region is mainly known for its cheeses and especially the Abondance, one of the 44 French cheeses that may carry the red-yellow European AOP label. The special taste is mainly due to the herbs of the Alpine meadows where the cows graze. And not just any cow, no it must be of the Abondance or Tarine breed. The Abondance is a dairy cow with a white head and pale horns and the Tarine is characterized by a pale red coat. Originally, the Abondance was a monastic cheese, produced by monks.
Less than a kilometer from the chalet you will find the cheese farm Girard. Time for a visit and the perfect opportunity to replenish our cheese board. We park the car and get inside. It looks like a small museum with all kinds of old tools to make cheese. We're allowed to have a look in the cowshed, recognize the Abondance cow by their white head and get an explanation about the whole production process from unpasteurized milk to cheese. It's quite a labour-intensive job to separate the curd from the whey and eventually transform the whey with a press into a round cheese. This then has to be salted in a brine bath and it takes at least 3 to 10 months to mature. Time to taste. The farmer cuts off a piece and our taste buds get to work. A bit bitter but especially spicy and fruity with a hint of hazelnut. Make it half a cheese, for 2.5 kilos! The sun is going down and we take the last rays of sunshine with us on the terrace. With our cheese and a glass of wine or beer. Après-ski at its best!