This item is temporarily unavailable
- Animal Rennet
- Age: 6 Months
- Sheep Milk
- by Agour
From the French Pyrénées, Ossau-Iraty is believed to descend from one of the first cheeses ever made. Pasteurized sheep’s milk gives it a rich, nutty flavor with a firm yet creamy texture and notes of macadamia. An amber, mold-speckled rind gives way to a smooth, dense, ivory paste. Enjoy with a bold Bordeaux and a bowl of Murray's Spicy Marcona Almonds for a hearty snack.
- Legend has it, Ossau-Iraty descends from one of the first cheeses ever to be made.
- It’s produced in the French Pyrénées between the neighboring Ossau Valley in the Béarn and the wooded hills of Iraty in French Basque country.
- Throughout the seasons, shepherds would travel between the two regions to gather milk from native Manech ewes and create cheese in mountainside huts, known as “kaiolars” in the regional Basque dialect.
- The sheep’s milk gives the cheese its mild, nutty flavor.
- The smooth, dense paste is contained within an amber, mold-speckled rind.
- AOC certification in France regulates the traditions of how this cheese is made, and defines that it must be made with milk from either Manech or Basco-Béarnaise sheep.
- AOC is short for the French “appellation d'origine contrôlée,” translating to “controlled designation of origin.”
- Basco-Béarnaise sheep are known for their curved horns covered in long, white wool, and milk with exceptionally high protein and fat content—great for cheesemaking.
- Founded in France in 1981 by Jean Exteleku, Fromagerie Agour is now run by Jean’s son Peio.
- The dairy was first established in Hélette, a small town on the southwestern border of France in the French Basque Country.
- In Agour’s earliest days, shepherds provided milk to the cheesemaker on the condition that they would be paid months later—after the cheeses were sold.
- It was a risky agreement, but one that paid off.
- By 1984, Agour had outgrown its original set-up and expanded their production facility. In 2009, they opened a second creamery in Mendive.
- Agour is a fiercely proud Basque company that, in addition to cheese, also specializes in traditional Basque foods like Jambon de Bayonne.
- After joining his father in 2001, Peio has prioritized boosting the local economy and creating jobs.
- Through the years, Agour remains dedicated to the creation of high-quality cheeses.
- Their Ossau-Iraty AOP won Best Cheese in the World at the World Cheese Awards in 2006 and again in 2011.
Barnyardy, funky, and still, with a hint of sweetness.