Cheese families by surface type

France has over a thousand varieties of cheese. In addition to classifying cheese by consumption habits, they are often grouped on the basis of technical information. Discover the eight major cheese families by types of surface.

Soft cheeses with a bloomy rind

Soft cheeses with a bloomy rind

These cheeses undergo a controlled ageing process. Their rind is white and fluffy. The texture is smooth and creamy. Examples: Camembert, Brie, Neufchâtel, etc.
Soft cheeses with a washed rind

Soft cheeses with a washed rind

These cheeses have a moist rind orange in colour. They are famed for their strong odour, which contrasts with their flavour, which is milder. Examples: Pont-l’Évêque, Maroilles, Mont-d’Or, etc.
Uncooked pressed cheeses

Uncooked pressed cheeses

The rind gives these cheeses their character. It is more or less thick depending on the maturation process, and gives them all their flavour and aroma. Examples: Reblochon, Tomme de Savoie,...
Cooked pressed<br/> cheeses

Cooked pressed
cheeses

These cheeses feature holes of varying sizes. They stand out for their texture, which is often tender, soft or firm, their finesse and their fruity aroma. Examples: Comté, Gruyère, Emmental,...
Blue-veined cheese or blue cheese

Blue-veined cheese or blue cheese

These cheeses tend to be found in mountainous regions. They are characterised by the blue mould that grows on their surface (Penicillium glaucum or Penicillium roqueforti). Examples: blue cheese,...
Processed<br/> cheeses

Processed
cheeses

These cheeses are produced by melting cheeses or a mixture of cheeses. Examples: Gruyère cream, processed cheeses with nuts, spreadable cheese, cheese cubes, mini snacks, etc.
Fresh<br/> cheeses

Fresh
cheeses

These cheeses are not matured. With their creamy, fondant texture, they have a mild flavour, slightly tangy, and sometimes with an added flavour. Example: Jonchée d’Aunis, Brousse Provençale,...
Goat's and<br/> ewe’s cheeses

Goat's and
ewe’s cheeses

With textures and tastes that are quite distinct from each other, they can be distinguished by their character. Examples: Chevrotin, Chavignol, Pélardon, Rocamadour, Chabichou du Poitou, Ossau-Iraty,...

How cheese is made

Using a few litres of milk, it is possible to create all sorts of varieties of cheese with wildly different tastes and flavours. Classifying by type of surface distinguishes cheeses by cheese type and production technique. But surprisingly, the stages of the production process remain the same.

Find out more about the production processes