he Brie de Meaux was allegedly invented at the Abbey of Notre-Dame-de-Jouarre. Talleyrand (the French ambassador to England from 1830 to 1834) declared Brie de Meaux the “King of Cheeses” during the Congress of Vienna. Talleyrand had previously claimed that no cheese could stand up to Brie. Prince Metternich, an Austrian statesman, was upset that his Bavaria blue cheese had not received such honor. Thus, he decided to organize a cheese tasting contest to conclude the closing banquet of the Congress, with fifty-two regional cheeses representing the countries that attended the Congress. As the tasting contest came to an end, Prince Metternich himself proclaimed Brie de Meaux “King of Cheeses and Prince of Desserts”.
Brie is enjoyed at the end of meal, on a slice of cereal bread, with a bite of fresh green grape. It is also used to cook specialty dishes of the Brie region: galettes briardes (Brie cakes), bouchées à la reine au Brie de Meaux (a puff pastry traditionally filled with poultry and mushrooms, also called vol-au-vent)…