Goat cheese, sometimes called chevre, is a cheese product made from the milk of goats. Goat cheese comes in a wide variety of forms, although the most common is a soft, easily spread cheese.
Goat cheese can also be made in hard aged varieties as well as semi firm cheeses like feta. Goat cheese is especially common in the Middle East, Africa, and some Mediterranean countries, where the hardy goat survives in areas where cows cannot. Goat cheese is distinctive due to the tangy flavor of goat milk. Sometimes this flavor is very strong and some consumers find it disagreeable.
In some cases, the flavor is sought after, and some dairies are well known for producing particularly goaty cheese.
The strong goat flavor is caused by hormones, which will be reduced if milk producing nanny goats are kept away from male billies. In addition, like all animal products, goat milk is heavily influenced by what the goats are eating. Because goats have hardy digestive systems, they tend to eat many bitter plants that more delicate animals such as cows and horses will not.