Welcome ladies and gentleman to the main event of the week! In the category of Culinary Boxing here at Chef’s Mandala, we have weighing in at 91 lbs from France, please welcome Comté cheese! His opponent, weighing in at 72 lbs from the cantons Bern, Jura, Fribourg, Vaud, and Neuchâtel, please welcome Swiss Gruyère!
LET’S GET READY TO RRRRR…….HAVE A SPIRITED DEBATE ON FOOD!!!
In the Red Corner – FRANCE
Ranked #2 in our heavyweight division, French Comté comes to us from the snowy heights of the Alps. Much like Siberia, this is not a land for the faint of heart, body or soul. With a distinct size and reach advantage, this raw cow’s milk cheese is the most dangerous challenger the reigning Swiss champ has faced in over 900 years! Yep, Europe is an old, finicky place where people like to eat the same thing over and over, and then they die. It’s called tradition. And Comté cheese, with its millennia-old history, has decided now is the time for a new King!
In the Blue Corner – SWITZERLAND
Coming in 10 to 20 lbs (4.5 to 9 kg) lighter is our reigning heavyweight champion of the dairy world, Gruyère! This A.O.P. (name protected) cheese embodies what has made the Swiss great – a demanding focus on quality albeit at typically higher prices then their fromage brethern. Hey, quality takes time and a Swiss watch isn’t made in just one day (probably much less)! Anyway, the high level of cheese mastery has enabled Swiss cheesemakers to age Gruyère for up to 18 months with amazing results!
- The Play-By-Play
What an upset, what an onslaught of sheer power and dairy rage! Much like when Mike Tyson was in his prime, the match is over shortly after it started! Beating Iron Mike’s record of the classic 30 second knockout by 5 seconds, this is a new world record!
AND THE WINNER IS….
Gruyère never had a chance. While a few Swiss caves in particular produce some amazing cheeses, the discipline and focus that the French Comté cheese association has brought to producers has elevated their game to new heights. To read more about this check out our Archaeology of Cheese post on Comté.