The production of Tome de Bordeaux (also known as Herbillette) is the successful result of a great collaboration between cheesemaker and affineur (cheese maturer).
Made from pasteurized goat's milk, initial production of the 12lb. wheels takes place at the Union Laitiere de la Venise Verte, located in the Loire region of France, an area famous for its goat cheese. When the wheels are still young, but robust enough to travel, they are transported to Bordeaux to be finished at the renowned caves of affineur Jean d'Alos.
There the cheeses are cared for, and, after being washed with Sauternes, have multiple layers of herbs and spices liberally applied to the rind. These include rosemary, thyme, juniper berries, red tapered cayenne peppers, savory, and white and black peppercorns.
Not surprisingly, these add complex and distinctive layers of flavor to the final cheese and make the cheese beautiful.
The interior paste of Tome de Bordeaux is bone-white in color, while the texture is semisoft, dense and pliable.
Flavors are highly aromatic, sweet, delicate and herbacious. The rind is intended to impart flavor to the cheese, and not to be eaten itself, and the result is that the character of the goat's milk beautifully balances the complex layers of flavor on the exterior. Delicious.