Jean Faup, the third, decided to resurrect the local cheese made traditionally by shepherds in their summertime mazucs – stone cheesemaking huts in the patois of the Upper Ariège – when they took their heards to graze at higher elevations. Jean modernized the recipe by pasteurizing the milk, painting the rind and aging it only three weeks: the post-war Pyrénées cheese was born!
In 1977, Didier Lemasson, Jean’s nephew, took over the dairy and returned to a more tradional cheese, produced with raw milk and a natural, washed rind. His vision was to revitalize the local cheese known as Bethmale.
Didier continued to innovate: in 1984, he developed a pressed-curd tomme made of mixed cow and goat milk.
In 1988, he launched a pure goat milk pressed tome which reinstated goat milk production in the area.
Today, managed by Didier and his daughter Virginie, Fromagerie Jean Faup draws its strength from five generations of experience and craft, with a mission to:
- Bring ancient traditions back to life and preserve them
- Preserve and enhance the fragile environment
- Produce a cheese with exceptional qualities
The taste is truly unique: a zingy tingle on the tongue, but with a mellow and nutty overall sensation. Aromas are pleasantly pungent, smelling of damp cellar and earth. Flavors are mild, very rich, milky and buttery with notes of grass, wood and mushrooms. The rind is washed, giving it a rosy glow. Since the cheese is not pressed, curds are loosely knit together; the semi-soft supple interior is dotted with tiny pinholes. The paste varies from ivory-white to buttery-yellow depending on the milk and the season.