March 2022 Edition:  The Artisan Women Gourmet Box

Order by February 28

Exclusive to Gourmet Box lovers,

We invite you to a virtual unboxing & tasting event with the winemaker!  More details inside the box!

Hello Wine and Cheese Lovers!

This is Marc, your personal sommelier and wine educator, here to guide you through our March Gourmet Box by DrinkMoi.  On March 8 every year we celebrate all things “femme” with International Women’s Day. This day of global recognition for women, their triumphs and challenges, has been run for nearly 100 years. Each year has a different theme, with 2022’s slogan being: #breakthebias.

Globally, the cheese and winemaking industries are still seen to be a “man’s domain”. But in fact, women have been contributing to these ancient crafts from their very beginnings. Playing our part as “the cheese ladies” we planned with our Gourmet Box Sommelier, Marc Checkley, to curate a box that celebrates the skills and art of women cheese and winemakers in Switzerland. It’s a box that changes perceptions and shares four unique stories. But of course, it all starts with the tasting!

A sparkling twist

This month’s wine selection is the “baby” of young vigneron Laura Paccot of Domaine de la Colombe in Féchy, Vaud.

Laura took over the much revered House officially from her father Raymond in 2018 and since then, has really stamped her identity and ideas for new winemaking styles. She also got married and had two children all in this period. A feat in itself!

Intriguing by name and by nature, De Facto is Laura’s “first born”. An unfiltered, natural sparkling wine made from Chasselas and imagined in the Ancestral Method (also known as “Pet Nat”). Unlike Champagne or Method Traditional sparkling wines where the bubbles develop in bottle during second fermentation, Ancestral style lets Mother Nature (pun intended 😉 ) do its magic. Under the watchful eye of the winemaker of course. The grapes are harvested slightly earlier to retain a higher amount of acidity. After gentle pressing, the juice is bottled during the first fermentation. Carbon Dioxide – the harbinger of bubbles – develops on its own reacting to the natural yeasts and sugars found in the ferment – nothing else is added, even sulphites. Release has to be perfectly timed and we’re receiving the first editions of De Facto 2021! The result is a floral sparkling wine, bright and fresh with an earthy mineral backbone.

I have been fortunate to spend a lot of time with Laura in the past two years and love seeing her at work. Under Laura’s soft-spoken and genial nature hides a quiet determination, passion, and skill for her craft in winemaking. A master in the making, with many ideas brewing.

Here’s a yummy pairing recipe.

De Facto 2021 (Bio)

By Laura Paccot, Domaine de la Colombe, La Côte

Grape:  100% Chasselas

Wine Style:  A dry and floral wine with small soft bubbles, unfiltered and lower in alcohol. Some sediment may be present.

Characteristics:  Fresh and lively with bright acidity. Notes of elderflower, pear, and baking apples give way to doughy bread and a hint of saline. A fab conversation starter, brilliant as an apéro with perch pan-fried in herbs and butter, or an avocado and tomato salad.

Serving recommendation:  Icy cold, 8-10 degrees Celsius. Pet Nat is quite reactive so make sure the bottle is settled before uncorking.

Interesting fact:  Legend has it that the Pet Nat/Ancestral wine method was discovered by a forgetful French shepherd. One summer, this farmer put his bottle of wine to cool in a nearby shallow mountain stream. Distracted by his flock, he forgot all about it and only found it on his return to the mountain the following summer! Upon opening, the wine foamed and fizzed with great vitality. Method Ancestral was born (and drank).


Santé, Marc Checkley

Drink Moi

A trilogy of tastes reflecting 3 artisan stories

Every month our artisanal cheese selection excites the palate but in this case, we also hope it inspires you to look a bit deeper and discover the stories of these three women cheesemakers, two from Canton Zurich and one from Vaud. Innovators and inspira-tors, each crafting their own styles from the land in which they work. Here’s our exclusive gourmet selection:

The Bold and the Beautiful

Sécheronet Vieux  from Fromagerie du Séchey (VD) is an extra-hard cheese lovingly made by hand and aged for 2 years.  It’s made in small batches from raw cow’s milk in the Jura Vaudois, more specifically the tranquil Vallée de Joux.  The cheese has grassy notes mingling with fresh hay. Bold and beautiful, it is salty, nutty. The ideal accompaniment to De Facto.

Fromagerie du Séchey has been in operation for more than 200 years. Specifically with the Magnenat family since 1970. Following the death of her father in 1985, it has been under the care of Danièle Magnenat. She was only 20, but took on this new challenge with determination and steel, becoming the first woman to hold the federal cheese master’s degree in Switzerland (“La Maîtrise Fédérale de Fromager”. Today she is known for producing magnificent Vacherin Mont d’Or PDO from August to February.  Read more about Danièle in the article here.

Dreamy and Creamy

Blue Dream from Schafmilchkäserei Koster (ZH) is a spicy, soft blue cheese made with 100% whole sheep’s milk from the local hilly mountain pastures. The cheese is individually pricked by hand to streak with blue mold. Its smooth, creamy texture envelops your palate and is balanced by a nice tangy finish. It is a perfect tiptoe into the world of blue cheese because it is mild and dreamy!  For a stronger flavor, let it ripen in your refrigerator before indulging.  Pass the crusty bread, please!

Aninia Adewale-Koster took over the management of Schafmimlkchkäserei Koster in summer 2020 in the footsteps of her father, Franz Koster.  Franz founded the family’s cheese dairy in 1990 specializing in sheep milk cheese and natural sheep’s milk yogurt.  The business grew steadily and within 7 years they expanded into a new facility with greater capacity to serve the growing demand.  Today, they stay true to their sheep’s milk roots, but in addition, have added organic Jersey cow and organic buffalo milk cheeses to their production.

Hay Tea Infusion

Heuhuufe from Chäsi Girenbad (ZH) is an ivory-colored, semi-hard artisanal cheese made with fresh, raw hay milk and infused with hay tea.  Hay milk refers to how the cows are fed, specifically adapted to the cycle of the seasons.  Hay milk cows are fed hay during the winter months, and grasses and herbs during the warmer months. Hay tea is exactly that – tea made by brewing fresh hay which is added to the milk during the cheesemaking process.

This cheese has a creamy texture that offers grassy, complex flavors.  It is a mild cheese but the wide variety of unique, delicate flavors and aromas keep you intrigued.

Chäsi Girenbad was founded in 1866 and managed by the Bieri family as milk buyers since 1958. Christa Egli-Bieri and her brother took over the family business from their father, Paul Bieri, only in 2021. Christa is a master cheesemaker and runs her business where most of the staff are women.  Winning countless cheese awards, she is always innovating with new techniques and developing new recipes.  We love that she continuously takes on young apprentices and shares her passion and innovation for cheesemaking with the next generation.

Homemade Fig Jam by Sainte Emilia

Retaining our artisan women celebration, we pair this gourmet selection with a delectable fig jam by Sainte Emilia Confiturie in Neuchâtel. Made from more than 60% locally-sourced fruit, this jam is rich in fig flavors and is the winning combination with our trio of cheeses.  Each jar is produced and labeled by hand, only in small quantities, without added preservatives and with a minimum of sugar.

Sainte Emilia Confitures is a family business from Neuchâtel that has been making artisanal jams since 2020. Tanya Jamin, its founder, decided to create her company two years ago to offer people seasonal homemade jams, not very sweet and as natural as possible, but also to bring a touch of modernity to this product, so appreciated by children and adults.  Today she produces 48 flavors, including 28 original flavor combinations that really showcase her creativity.

Here’s to Gourmet!

A collaboration between Marc Checkley – “Drink Moi”, wine-inspired events and education

& The Cheese Ladies – L’Atelier du Fromage

Discover The Gourmet Box by “Drink Moi” – The Artisan Women’s Box!

Available To Order Until 28 February.

Delivered on Thursday, 17 March.

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