“The taste is in the fat”… The Swiss win the first World Raclette Championship

“The taste is in the fat”… The Swiss win the first World Raclette Championship

The dish may be one of Most popular in FranceFrance can go and dress up. This weekend, the smell of melting cheese flooded Morgens, a village in Valais (Switzerland) that prides itself on being the birthplace of raclette. It was a first in this alpine environment Raclette World Championship. The amazing competition ended on Sunday with an almost complete victory for the Swiss expertise.

Raclette personified Swiss Just like fondue, chocolate and banks, it was born centuries ago when shepherds heated cheese near a wood fire and scraped off the melted part for food. But not all this time have producers, experts and restaurateurs gathered under one roof to designate the best raclette in the world.

Nearly 90 raclette cheese producers made the trip. “All these people are small producers who go up with their cows to the mountain pastures at the beginning of summer,” explained Henri-Pierre Galetti, one of the event’s founders. “For them, it is a way to promote their work, which is hard work but very beautiful,” he added enthusiastically. Morgens, located more than 1,300 meters above sea level in a wooded valley not far from the French border, also welcomed nearly 10,000 raclette fans who came to watch the competition.

The judges combine up to 15 types of cheese

This Saturday, in the village hall kitchen, cheese wheel halves are placed under electric raclette grills. Cooking time varies depending on the type of cheese and is determined by sight. When the first bubbles appear, but before they turn brown, the cheese is scraped off and presented to the jury. “The taste is in the fat,” explains one of the “scrapers,” Jean-Michel Dubusson, as he scrapes off another portion with the back of his knife. “It is especially important not to heat it too quickly.”

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As the kitchen hums to life, a respectful silence falls in the room as the judges twirl the cheese around a fork with a deft flick of the wrist before tasting it. “We look for raclette that is creamy and smooth and has a nice appearance and color,” explains Eddie Belívar. “Papa Raclette” continues: “In terms of taste, it has a nice texture, no wire, no rope, no gum.”

The judges taste a maximum of 15 cheeses at each session, before their senses become overwhelmed. Hot black tea or apple slices allow you to refresh your palate and start fresh. .

Tricolor silver medal

There were three categories: Alpine Raw Milk Raclette, Raw Milk Raclette and the Other Raclette Cheeses category. All prizes were won by Helvetians except Earl Les NoistiersComing from neighboring France from Leschaux in Haute Savoie. The French won the silver medal in the first category of raw Alpine milk.

Although the majority of competitors came from Switzerland or France, teams from Belgium, Canada, Italy and Romania were also competing. The next edition is supposed to witness producers from the United Kingdom, Japan, Norway, Sweden, and even Kyrgyzstan.

“It’s a pleasure to be here, to represent Romania“It’s a big deal for us,” said Narcisse Pintea, 34, who learned his trade in Switzerland before returning to his homeland. “There are many components that make raclette so fun, but the main thing is the people you share it with. When you have good company, raclette is already 80% successful.

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