Sainte-Maure de Touraine

Sainte-Maure de Touraine is a French cheese produced in the region of Touraine, mainly in the department of Indre-et-Loire. It is named after the small town of Sainte-Maure-de-Touraine, in the department of Indre-et-Loire, at equal distance from westly Chinon and eastly Loches.

Sainte-Maure de Touraine is an unpasteurized cheese made from goat's whole milk. It has the form of a small log, around 16-17 cm in length, and weighs at least 250 g. It is white and soft under a greyish mouldy rind. A remarkable feature is the straw through its centre, marked by the AOC seal and a number indicating the producer. The straw is used, in the making, to keep the roll together. The finished cheese has 45% milkfat.

Protected since 1990 by the AOC Seal, Sainte-Maure de Touraine is made with traditional methods. It should not be confused with "Sainte-Maure", also produced in Touraine, but without meeting the stringent AOC production criteria. "Sainte-Maure" is the industrial counterpart of the high-quality, traditionally made, Sainte-Maure de Touraine. Their straw is not marked by a seal, thus differentiating them from AOC cheeses.

1,065 tons of Sainte-Maure de Touraine were produced in 2003, 58% on dairies and 42% on farms. Since it became a AOC in 1990, its production has strongly increased, from 275 tons (a nearly 300% increase). It is now the second largest produced goat's cheese AOC in France, just behind Crottin de Chavignol.