Gordon Edgar shares his war stories of this season's bad cheese. One bad week can ruin a month, it seems:
There are times of the year I associate with bad cheese. Usually it is after a holiday, when a distributor has bought too much of something perishable that didn’t sell. Buyers are alerted to these deals with flyers titled things like “Hot Sheet”, “Killer Deals”, and “Margin Builders.” This is definitely risky buying for the most part. You can make good money and still put things out cheap, but when these go bad, they go bad in a hurry.
The week after Thanksgiving can be one of those weeks. So, I was quite surprised when I had a week of bad cheese, and none of it from those kinds of sales. I don’t want to go into detail here (sorry), partially because I am still negotiating credit on some of this stuff. But instead of a ““Gordon’s purely arbitrary cheese obsession of the week” entry, I was inundated with cheese that made my tongue hurt.
Max McCalman has been blogging over at Artisanal, and this entry is all about how to eat a cheese plate (it also touches on sub par restaurant wait-staff). Which cheese should I eat first? Max has all the answers:
I just received an image of a cheese plate served at an upscale NYC restaurant. The image clearly showed the strongest cheese on the left, the mildest in the middle, and the second strongest (or mildest) on the right. The sender said the waiter informed her the order the cheeses be tasted was unimportant. Alors! If you simply tasted these cheeses from left to right, the strong cheese would leave a much bigger “finish” on the palate than the second one. The subtle nuances in the middle cheese would be missed or overwhelmed. The last cheese might be able to make a final stand, but it would be better appreciated if it had been tasted before the strongest cheese.
If you've ever found yourself wondering what the cheesemaking industry is like in Russia, here's some first hand info from an American expat who makes cheese by hand in Moshnitsy Russia. From the BBC, follow the link below to watch the video.
As part of a BBC series about entrepreneurs around the world, US-born expat Jay Close describes the challenges and rewards of running a cheese farm in the village of Moshnitsy near the Russian capital Moscow.
What began as an experiment has, in 18 months, become a business with an estimated turnover of US$40,000 in 2011.
Jay now has five cows plus eight goats, makes 30 different varieties of cheese, and sells to tourists, Muscovites and high-end restaurants.
But he says establishing a business in Russia has been "hard, hard work".
Wisconsin based BelGioioso Cheese won a total of six medals at the World Cheese Awards contest held November 23, 2011 in the UK. Three awards recognized the entire line of BelGioioso Gorgonzola cheeses. Their exceptional signature blue-veined cheese, BelGioioso CreamyGorg received a silver medal, Crumbly Gorgonzola a bronze medal and the newest addition, Crumbly Gorgonzola with Sheep’s Milk and its unique rich, creamy flavor, received a silver medal.
Try this recipe for Mac and Cheese with BelGioioso CreamyGorg and Prosciutto
Washingtonpost.com reports on how Michigan may have a new industry to help pull them out of their economic crisis:
Vineyards and tasting rooms are springing up rapidly in Michigan, where fertile hillsides near the Great Lakes provide ideal settings for cool-weather varieties such as riesling, pinot grigio and chardonnay. Grape growing and wine making still have only a fraction of the muscle wielded by the automobile industry, but their success is striking given the economic downturn, which hit Michigan years before the rest of the nation.
Eleven wineries have opened in the past year and four others will soon follow, said Linda Jones, executive director of the Michigan Grape and Wine Industry Council. The number of Michigan wineries using fruit grown in state has jumped from 18 to 89 in the past couple of decades.
Found in the vast blog recipe collection What Can Me Have, these Buttermilk Blue Cheese Cookies are both sweet and savory.
I love small, savoury pieces of food, but I had never imagined savoury cookies until I found this recipe for "blue cheese scallion drop biscuits" a few weeks ago. The recipe is great because it's easy to adjust; instead of using blue cheese and scallions it could be cheddar and sun-dried tomato – or gouda and olives. I converted the American measurements to European ones and left out baking soda, because I never have any at home anyway.
We belatedly celebrated Maria's hen party last night and to not show up empty handed I decided to try to make cheese biscuits. These pieces of crunchy, slightly chewy goodness were super-easy to make and proved to be perfect party food – I even got asked for the recipe!
Mary Orlin from the huffingtonpost.com offers some great holiday gift ideas for the people in your life that love wine. Some gifts to consider: wine tasting kits, a handblown glass Wine Soirée decanter and a wine holder.
Didn't get all your holiday shopping done on Black Friday or Cyber Monday? Not to worry, I've got a list of wine-inspired gifts, organized by the personality of the recipient. You can get most of these gifts online and in time to make it under the tree (if you start shopping now!).
Click here for more.
On December 5, 1933, the state of Utah ratified the 21st Amendment to the US Constitution, ending Prohibition and making the sale of alcohol legal in the United States for the first time in almost 14 years.
Therefore, if you imbibe, and you love milk, hoist a glass in celebration today and mingle the two as a cocktail:
From Aaron Rutkoff at the Wall Street Journal, here is the story of Colin Hagendorf, the man who set out to taste every slice of pizza in Manhattan:
Mr. Hagendorf, a 28-year-old Brooklyn resident, may know New York-style pizza more exhaustively than any other living soul. During a 2½-year quest, he has sampled nearly every pie sold by the slice in Manhattan. The feat—involving 362 slice joints—is unmatched by any modern-day enthusiast, according to local pizza experts.
"It's become a chore," he admitted recently, over a lunchtime slice. Folding the pizza lengthwise, he watched glumly as the end sagged, unsupported by a doughy crust. A proper slice, Mr. Hagendorf avows, should crease when folded and droop only at the very tip, "just like Johnny Cash's nose."