The Most Amazing Cheese Moment of 2011
This summer at the Vermont Artisan Cheese Festival I scored the last available Summer Snow from Woodcock Farm. Mushroomy bloomy rinds are a favorite of mine on a summer evening with friends. I brought it home to the Berkshires and that weekend we opened a bottle of wine, plunked the Summer Snow on a cheeseboard, and tromped out to the screen tent in our flipflops and shorts. We live outside all summer in the Berkshires, but barricade ourselves behind screens because it rains often, and the mosquitos, noseeums, and mayflies are ATROCIOUS. We settled in under our flimsy screen tent.
It was a beautiful evening with a cool breeze keeping the worst of the unwanted guests at bay. We were admiring barn swallows swooping, and cedar waxwings appearing to have an allout rave on the blueberries when the first drops of water hit us from behind. What the...? The western sky was black, but summer rain is a passing thing, and welcome. We scooted closer to the cheese.
Then the wind hit. It shook the tent and whipped the screens aside like wet paper. It got cold, really cold. Suddenly it was hailing; collecting on the groaning, leaping tent roof and only repeated roof heavings kept the whole thing from collapsing on us, huddled as we were in the center of the tent clutching our wine slushies and longing for the safety of the house 50 feet away. Iggy, our mighty mutt, was shivering and whimpering as the quarter-size hail pummeled the ground, feet and ankles, and then bounced to do it all over again.
We lived, Iggy too. When it was over there were 8 inches of snow in the yard. Turns out, only 1/4 mile away, it had been a gentle summer rain.
Perhaps Woodcock Farm should put a warning on their cheese; May Cause Meteorological Mayhem.