Pied de vent is a soft, washed-rind cheese with a pronounced smell.
The cheese is made by made by a company called “Fromagerie du Pied-De-Vent” which is in Havre-aux-Maison, Îles-de-la-Madeleine, Québec. The milk used comes from a herd of cows on the island. The cows are all from the breed of cows called “La Canadienne”, a Québécois heritage breed of small cows.
The milk is curdled, then the curd is cut, and stirred until it is very small, about the size of small peas. The curd is then packed into moulds lined with cheesecloth. The cheeses are then turned out of the moulds, and aged 60 days.
The rind is edible.
Pied de vent cheese was created by a Vincent Lalonde.
He wanted to produce unpasteurized whole milk, but it couldn’t be sold legally in Québec as milk. So, he decided to make a cheese from it. So, with the aid of $80,000 from the Canada Economic Development programme (sometime between 1996 and 1998), he started making the cheese commercially on 12 October 1998.
“Pieds de Vent” (“feet of the wind”) are what local islanders call rays of sun, because they feel that it means the next day will be windy.