A controversial list of the world's best cheeses has just been published. France has come out licking its wounds, while the undoubted victor of the ranking is another surprise.
Not a single French cheese made it into a new top 10 list of the world’s best cheese, and France’s foodie community is outraged.
TasteAtlas, which is based in Bulgaria, published the ranking of its 100 favourite cheeses - and Italy dominated throughout.
Italian cheeses are in eight of the 10 top spots, with Parmigiano Reggiano, Burrata and Grana Padano making up the top three.
The first entries on the list for France were Reblochon and Comté, coming in at numbers 13 and 14 respectively.
The results prompted a bemused French cheesemonger to tell news channel BFMTV, “The judges must have been Italian!” The broadcast also claimed that Italians were simply better at promoting their cheesy offerings around the world than the French. That’s fighting talk!
TasteAtlas’ often controversial rankings are said to be voted for by international food critics, which makes Italy’s dominance somewhat more surprising. In fact, only two non-Italian cheeses made the top ten. They were Portugal’s Queijo Serra da Estrela, which placed at number 7 and Bundz, a Polish cheese made from sheep's milk, which came in at number 9.
BFMTV said the results were a “crushing blow for French gastronomy”, but, if France wants another nation to commiserate with, they just have to hop across the English Channel. Britain fared significantly worse than their neighbours, without a single one of their cheeses making an appearance, despite numerous iconic milk-based offerings.
This isn’t the first time Taste-Atlas’ rankings has seen France licking its culinary wounds. Last year, they came under fire for placing France behind the United States in its world’s best cuisines list.
The website responded to a number of complaints, saying their lists are a reflection of real people’s tastes, adding in a statement, “Don’t hate us, we’re just counting votes”.