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Feb 24, 2010 12:40 PM

Please help me name this "Brie" cheese!

Ok, so this is driving me crazy. I used to buy this cheese at Trader Joe's. It was sold as a type of Brie, although technically I think it wasn't officially a Brie. It had a different name, and although I'm pretty sure it was French, I don't think it was actually from the Brie region.
Regardless, it looked like Brie, was sold in the Brie section, and tasted like Brie - albeit a super-creamy, mild, mouth-wateringly delicious Brie.

Now I've moved away and am nowhere near a Trader Joe's, and I can't for the life of me remember what it was called.
I'll know when I hear it, though.
It wasn't D'Affinois and it wasn't St Andre.

It came in Brie-like wedges (cut from a wheel, because they were always various different weights) and usually they were somewhat squashed, because the cheese was quite soft. I know TJ's actually had it labelled as "Brie something-or-other..." (insert name here).
I believe it sold for $7.99/lb.

Any ideas?

Help me please, I need my cheese-fix!

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  1. Brie de Meaux ?

    Brie Noir?

    I'm not sure why your shop would call it Brie if it wasnt made in Brie. Surely they would have called it by whatever it's real name was?

    1 Reply
    1. re: Harters

      Thanks, but no. It was something like "Cremeux", except that that wasn't it. And yes, I know "Cremeux" means "creamy".
      I'm not sure if it was a word that meant anything, I just know that whatever it was, was the actual name of the cheese. Not a specific quality.
      And TJ called it something like "Brie Cremeux" or "Cremeux Brie".

    2. Could it have been Coulommiers? The properties you mention actually sound like Camembert.

      1 Reply
      1. re: CDouglas

        No, it wasn't Coulommiers. Camembert is a LOT stronger. This cheese was actually very mild tasting for a Brie.

      2. Stores like Trader Joe's often private label their cheeses, but if I had to guess, it's Ile de France or Fleur de France brand.

        The other words were probably descriptors.

        3 Replies
        1. re: cheesemonger

          No and no, unfortunately. I have seen it sold elsewhere too, e.g. at Garden of Eden. It's definitely not a TJ private label.
          Also, definitely a name, not a descriptor. My French is pretty good - it was a very French sounding name, as mentioned something LIKE "Cremeux" (although I realize that IS a descriptor, and like I said, that wasn't it).
          Still seeking :(

          1. re: Bambellini

            Obviously yes. It was an Ile de France brand.

            I'm curious, if you are in Germany, surely you have access to better cheese that this stuff.

            1. re: cheesemonger

              Uhm... this stuff is REALLY good. Of course I have access to great cheeses here. Just haven't been able to find something similar to Supreme, and that's what I happen to be craving right now.
              BTW I think Ile de France is just the importer in the US. I'm actually surprised, because I think most of their cheeses are pretty bad (at least, the ones I've tasted - they have that "factory cheese" taste).
              Here's some info on Suprême, I can't be bothered to read it all now, because the pics only make my mouth water more:

        2. There is a triple creme cheese (a Brie-like cheese with cream added to increase the butterfat content) called Delice des Cremiers. My guess is based on your recollection that the name of the cheese included something like "cremeux."

          18 Replies
          1. re: cheesemaestro

            Alas, that is not it either :(
            Good guess, though. Sounds very similar, perhaps one to try!

              1. re: jumpingmonk

                AH! Finally found it :)
                It's called SUPRÊME, and funnily enough, I'm still wondering whether it is or isn't a Brie (technically speaking). As can be seen from the picture, nowhere does it actually mention the word "Brie". Instead, it says "La crème de la crème, fromage Français", which simply means "best of the best" (or in this case, in a clever play on words, "cream of the crop"), "French cheese".
                However, this is the description offered on a Canadian website (selling this cheese): "Brie Supreme: Cows milk, mild, triple cream, very soft, pale yellow, with an edible, crusty white mould rind. Best known French cheese and is called "The Queen of Cheeses". Brie, one of the great dessert cheeses, should be served at room temperature."
                And at Trader Joe's, they also still sell it as "Brie Suprême".
                And I just found a website from the distributor, but they don't call it Brie:

                Not that it really matters, but just out of curiosity: are there different standards in the US for labelling Brie-like cheeses as "Brie"? In Europe, it has to be from a specific region in France, just like you can't call any fizzy wine "Champagne".

                Thanks for all the suggestions! :)

                1. re: Bambellini

                  "Not that it really matters, but just out of curiosity: are there different standards in the US for labelling Brie-like cheeses as "Brie"?"

                  Not really. Some name-protected cheeses are more "respected" than others, which is why you don't see American Roquefort, and while you see American versions of Parm, it's not labeled "Parmigiano", but Parmesan. But you do see American Gorgonzola in those dreadful cups all the time, and Gorgonzola is most certainly name-protected in Europe.

                  Treatment of soft-ripened cheese suck as Camembert and Brie is the same in the US and Canada- no respect for the name. If it's bloomy, call it brie.

                  That said, only some bries are name-protected in France, not all.

                  1. re: cheesemonger

                    "That said, only some bries are name-protected in France, not all."

                    I'm not sure I understand this. Here in the European Union, if it is called Brie, then it has to be Brie - it has Protected Designation of Origin status. If you are saying that there are cheeses that looks like Brie and may even be made in the Ile-de-France, but isn't sold as such, then I'm sure you may be right.

                    1. re: Harters

                      I mean that only 2 types of brie cheeses have true AOC status: Brie de Melun and Brie de Meaux.

                      In Europe it's not "done" to call it brie if it's not from Ile de France, and abiding by the rules/geography of brie. In the US, you can make a bloomy rind cheese any way/size/milk/shape you want, stabilize it with calcium, call it Brie, and nobody cares.

                      1. re: cheesemonger

                        Understood now. As such the word "brie" (on its own) is not protected under EU legislation. And, indeed, we make a brie style in the UK (including one about 20 miles from me). I guess it's like "cheddar" which, although a placename is also regarded as a process, so anyone can make a "cheddar" - although "West Country Farmhouse Cheddar" has PDO status.

                        1. re: Harters

                          I never quite trusted cheese in America... and now I know why, lol!
                          Of course the worst is "cheese food", which really isn't cheese at all. Like everything, it has its place. Whether that is actually in the food section, is a matter of opinion...

                          1. re: Bambellini

                            <I never quite trusted cheese in America... and now I know why, lol!>

                            That's a strange thing to say. Are you asserting that there are no good cheeses made in the U.S.? I don't know where you live, but there are a number of Vermont & upstate New York outfits putting out some pretty terrific product. (And many others around the country also - I'm just most familiar with my own region.)

                            1. re: small h

                              Bambellini, that's not at all fair to the hundreds of wonderful artisan producers that are making cheese that will curl your toes.

                              Many people think that name-protection is the only way to get fine cheese, and this is completely untrue. While name protection has indeed ensured that these cheeses are not lost or changed, there is an amazing array of fantastic cheeses made by dedicated cheesemakers in the US, and to dismiss them as untrustworthy is, frankly, ignorance, and to lump them in with "cheese food" is worse than that.

                              I implore you to go to an actual cheese shop (not Trader Joes), and ask about Rogue River Blue, or Grayson, Pleasant Ridge Reserve, anything from Jasper Hill Cellars in VT, anything from Cowgirl Creamery in CA, or any other american artisan cheese that shop carries, and you will see that there is not only terrific product, as small h says, but product that's winning awards internationally.

                              1. re: cheesemonger

                                Would you know if any American artisan cheeses are exported to Europe (specifically the UK)?

                                1. re: Harters

                                  I know that they have been brought for competitions (i.e. World cheese Awards in London) and shows, but I don't know if there's anything available for sale. The Neal's Yard site has nothing, and that would be my first place to look. I know that there have been some EU issues that have more to do with politics than cheese, but that's another ball of curd.

                                  edited to add:

                                  Check this link-

                                  1. re: cheesemonger

                                    Thanks for that. Presumably if it goes down well in London, we might get it in the north sometime in the next decade or so.

                                    1. re: Harters

                                      Harters, I strongly recommend that you seek out the cheeses mentioned in the article if you are in London or if Neal's Yard can ship them to you. Pleasant Ridge Reserve, Rogue River Blue and Red Hawk are all wonderful. Each has been awarded best in show (Pleasant Ridge Reserve twice) at the American Cheese Society's annual competition.

                                2. re: cheesemonger

                                  Don't forget Lively Run Cayuga Blue, In my opinion the all time BEST raw goat's milk blue cheese on Earth, and WAY better than its european analouges (which would basically be Persilee du Beujolais and its related cousins).

                                  1. re: cheesemonger

                                    I'm sorry, didn't mean to step on anyone's toes here... It was meant to be a bit of a joke. However, I must add that in my 7 years in the US, I rarely came across any American cheeses that could truly compete with European cheeses. I've had some that were good, but they were pretty few and far between... And I say that as a cheese lover. Of course I haven't tried every single American cheese out there... It's just that in Europe, it's like cheese-lovers paradise. There are places where you can go into a relatively small store, and pretty much every single cheese on the shelf is going to be utterly amazing. And cheap... rarely will you find anything priced over $10/lb.
                                    I remember fondly this small town in the French Alps, in a ski resort. You couldn't get a decent head of lettuce for miles around. But the cheese...Oh. My. God.

                                    Next time I am in the US, I will gladly try the cheeses mentioned! For now I am back in Europe, with all its cheesy goodness... Please don't hate me! :)

                            2. re: cheesemonger

                              Ditto for Camembert. The name "Camembert de Normandie" has AOC status, but Camembert by itself doesn't.

                              The standards for Brie de Meaux and Brie de Melun specify raw milk. Since it's illegal in the US to sell raw milk cheeses that are aged less than 60 days, we don't get the real thing anyway. Instead, France sends us a pasteurized version of Brie de Meaux labeled as Fromage de Meaux.

                        2. re: Bambellini

                          Most of the exported French Brie is made differently from the Brie that is not exported. Only some of the higher-quality stuff gets here to the US. In the lower-quality exported Brie, different "molds" are used that create a firmer rind and firmer cheese, called Havarti-style brie by the industry. Most of the American-made brie cheese also has this firm "Havarti" quality, with an obviously white rind that never really softens or changes color with age.