Milk: Sheep, Pasteurized
Country: France, Pyrenees
Accompaniment: Lighter reds or any white
This is one of our most popular and milder sheep’s milk cheeses. It is made in the south-westerly part of the Pyrenees, the mountain range that separates France and Spain, and even more specifically in the Ossau Valley and the forest plateau of Iraty, which give this cheese its name. The close proximity to the Atlantic coast brings moist climatic conditions and creates excellent grazing land for the local breeds of sheep (Manech and Basco-Bearnaise) that provide the milk for this cheese.
Ossau Iraty is a semi-firm, pressed cheese, becoming firmer with age. It has been aged for a minimum of 90 days. Its mild, sweet flavor, with hints of herbs and nuts, makes this cheese a before and after dinner option. The makers at Agour (twice World Cheese Award winners with their Ossau), kicked it up a notch by adding white summer truffle.