One of the oldest and greatest Normandy cheeses, Livarot is a monastic French cheese easily distinguished by its washed rind and pungent aroma. Originating in the commune of Livarot and protected by AOC since 1975, the cheese is also called "The Colonel" because of the five strips of raffia that encircle the cheese, similar to the one worn on a French army colonel's uniform.
Livarot is considered to be one of the finest cheeses of France with its soft, golden paste with little holes and springy texture. The taste is nutty, melting in the mouth, to release flavors of salty lemon and spiciness. The texture is creamy, smooth, and quite runny at room temperature. Each wheel is washed in brine, colored in annatto, and matured for up to two months in warm, humid cellars to develop its distinctive delicious taste.
Livarot is best enjoyed with a full-bodied red wine, glass of Calvados, Normandy cider or even a traditional French hard cider. It tastes excellent with crusty bread and fruits or added to vegetables, fruit salads, soups, and gratins.