A national cultural and gastronomic heritage, Camembert is much more than a cheese, a true symbol of France, which resonates both on the territory and beyond its borders.

Invented by a monk

Camembert owes its creation to a monk during the French Revolution. Tradition has it that a refractory priest hid with Marie and Jacques Harel in their mansion in Camembert. The priest taught Marie Harel how to make cheese using the Brie cheese technique. Cheeses made with this method looked like a miniature version of Brie. Marie Harel transmitted this new tradition to her daughter and son-in-law who decided to sell the cheese on the Argentan and Caen markets.

the Camembert cheese, a symbol of France
A Camembert – Copyright Fromagerie Durand

A National Flavor

From local, camembert became a national flavor thanks to the inauguration of the railway. The grandson of Marie Harel, during a train stop in the Pays d’Auge, had his Camembert tasted by the Emperor Napoleon III who found it very good and decided to bring it back to the Tuileries Palace. The popularity of camembert will continue during the First World War. On average, 10,000 camemberts were supplied daily to the army’s central stores. Despite its limited shelf life, its convenient box and the use of sliced ​​cheese as a snack with bread was appreciated by all. The camembert then remained etched in popular memory, which ensured its definitive success.

Camembert Museum in Normandy

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