When it comes to food, we have no rules and no restrictions – the menu reflects what we see in the market and what we feel like eating right now. It could be a Thai salad, a hamburger or a traditional dish from Alsace. And right now we feel like eating couscous.
If you buy in to national stereotypes you might be surprised to hear that those words came from a Frenchman (after all, the French made most of the rules in the first place!). But Yves de Roquemaurel, owner of Coccinelle Bistro in Centro, is happy to confound stereotypes and
break bend the rules when they get in the way of his food philosophy.
Coccinelle is situated in a sweet alleyway, just around the corner from Rua do Ouvidor.
A few months ago I wrote about the wonderful cheeses of Minas. I had tasted several, but was aware that there were many more to try – Queijo Canastra, Queijo da Mantiqueira, Queijo d’Alagoa – I had read about these cheeses (and drooled over pictures) but never had the opportunity to taste them.
Luckily for me, Yves read that post and got in touch to let me know that I didn’t need to go all the way to Minas to taste the best cheeses of Brazil. He told me he bad been importing queijos de leite cru (raw milk cheeses) direct from the cheese makers in Minas for months!
Well now, this was exciting news! But hang on a minute – “Months?” I asked. Exporting raw milk cheeses out of Minas (for sale) was only made legal in August 2013. “Ah, oh yes” Yves mumbled and quickly did some mental calculations. “For one month and 3 weeks, of course…” he grinned.
Queijo Contraband? Queijos de leite cru (raw milk cheeses): Canastra, Salitre and Alagoa. Photo © Julien Geay