I had a moment while eating this Brie when I actually thought to myself: This is heaven on earth. To be fair, it was the first time I had ever smothered a slice of Brie with honeycomb and hadn’t realized how mind-blowing that would be. But it was also in no small part a testament to this gentle Brie.
Fans of bloomy-rind cheeses with stronger flavours like La Sauvagine won’t take to Albert’s Leap Bel Haven Triple Creme Brie by Quality Cheese Inc. from Ontario (nominated in the cream-enriched soft cheese with bloomy rind category for the Canadian Cheese Grand Prix). But devotees of straight-up creamy cheeses like Délice de Bourgogne will fall in love.
The rind is not mouldy or bitter in the slightest. It is almost chalky, but in an appealing way. I described it as “crisp” in my notes, adding that I find that to be a rare description for a Brie, but there you have it. It has faint hints of sour cream at its peak but is far less heavy than other creamy soft cheeses.
The flavour is overwhelmingly milky, which may not impress some tasters, but I think it should be noted that complexity and conflict of flavours is not indicative of quality – at least to me. I enjoy bold-flavoured cheeses and sometimes fail to appreciate simpler tastes. There is beauty to be found in stripper-down flavours, too (or else why would caprese salad be on every menu come summertime?).
Albert’s Leap has that clean simplicity in spades and makes it easy to appreciate. It would be a great gateway cheese for Brie-ophobes (they’re real and they’re out there). I served my boyfriend, one such Brie-ophobe, a similar straightforward baked Brie a few weeks ago and he is now a convert.
Albert’s Leap is understated – to be paired with a classic like a jean jacket or flowing cotton skirt, and a sunny patio.
This is the seventh profile of eight cheeses I tried ahead of the Canadian Cheese Grand Prix. Click here for more on the awards.