Betty Koster founded Fromagerie L’amuse in 1989 with her husband Martin. Betty and Martin have two retail shops in Holland: one in the city and one northwest of Amsterdam, in Ijmulden, just off the Vissershaven docks. The shops are a destination for cheese lovers, featuring rare, small-production Dutch gems like Wilde Weide and Terschelling.
Betty’s deep, long-term connections with Dutch farmers, cheesemakers and opleggers (affineurs) has given her access to an unparalleled range of cheeses. Her opleggers sometimes age wheels at warmer-than-normal temperatures. It’s a high wire act of affinage, one that can produce off flavors if not done carefully, but when it works, creates a cheese with a distinctive roasted hazelnut and burnt caramel flavor that retains its velvety texture. She exports a handful to America exclusively through Essex St. Cheese. If you happen to be around any of her shops, make sure to stop by and say hi (“hoi”)!