Cheverie de Modene + Antipasti Dinner

After our stay in Paris, we took the train down to Provence to stay at a tiny little hilltop hotel called Crillon Le Brave. There is no place more fancy casual. The french know how to live! 

After enjoying a day trip to Châteauneuf-du-Pape for wine tasting, we noticed a sign for chèvre on the side of the road near our hotel. My husband was kind enough to accommodate my u-turn request. He knows that there is no getting between me and my goat cheese. That, and a girl who has had a few glasses of Sancerre needs a snack. 

On down the skinny country road we drove. 

We had stumbled across the wonderful Cheverie de Modene. In a small storefront located in the owners house, the proprietor greeted us with a warm smile and a rack of goat cheese. I could have cried. 

She explained to us that she offers many types of goat cheeses. The higher rack in the image below contains the aged goat cheeses which are dehydrated with salt. She offered varieties that had been aged for one day, three days, a week and more.

Those bright beauties in the rack below? That is fresh goat cheese (not yet a day old) that isn't dehydrated with salt. From front to back, they were covered in red pepper flakes, shallots, tarragon, black pepper, sage, herbes de provence and garlic. 

Naturally, I bought a fresh goat cheese and an aged goat cheese. One cheese round per person, right? The kicker was that they also make fresh Saucisson. Don't mind if I do. 

I am a big fan of antipasti platters, and decided to make a meal out of our purchases back at our hotel. The restaurant was kind enough to pull together the collection of snacks below for us to enjoy on our terrace with our bounty.

The fresh, unsalted cheese was incredibly creamy, and had a very light flavor. The aged cheese was semi-firm in comparison, and had a tangier kick (my personal favorite). The one shot I did forget to take? The inside of the cheese. That's because we couldn't wait a moment longer and dove right in after this picture was snapped. That beautiful tray below turned into a receptacle for olive pits, orange peels, bread crumbs and cheese scraps. It wasn't cute. 

This is an incredibly easy meal to recreate at home with a quick trip to your local cheese shop or grocery store. And as always, every meal is better with some vin. 

Bon Appétit!