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No Fairy Tale

Once upon a time there was a young girl sitting in the lunch room of a chalet somewhere in the mountains of Berner Oberland. Like all the other boys and girls signed up for that ski camp she just had arrived on a bus and was waiting to learn whom she would be put in a group with and when they finally could grab their skis and hit the slopes.

Restless and bored at once the kids started to unpack the lunches they had brought from home. The sounds of aluminum foil being torn off, insulated bottles being opened and apples being bitten into took over the room.

Eating her thick and soothing butter, salami and pickles sandwich the girl all of a sudden noticed a boy sitting a few chairs down at the opposite side of the table. Or more so did she notice his lunch.

In the center of a square piece of wax paper sat a small disc of a soft cheese. With a Swiss army knife the boy cut what looked like perfect sixteenths off the round. One at a time, slowly and concentrated. He would slide each wedge off the knifes blade onto the bottom right corner of the wax paper, pick it up with two fingers and put it in his mouth.

The diminishing disc looked like a fluffy cloud constantly changing its shape. Watching the boy eat made the girl assume that the cheese simply melted in his mouth. And in the air the girl believed to pick up some seriously lovely aromas.

It was then and there that the girl fell in love. Not with the boy but with the cheese. Not knowing its name didn’t matter. And even without having had one single bite she knew it tasted wonderful. It was its charisma, the message the cheese sent that touched and tickled the girl. “I might be tiny but can stand out all by myself,” it said. “I am fragile but I have character. I am pure, raw and beautiful.”

Weeks later, long returned from the ski camp the girl met the cheese again. She had been looking for it in the cases and on the shelves of various cheese shops. And one day there it was. Unmistakably. It went home with her. 

They lived happily ever after. And until this day I still am madly in love with Tomme Vaudoise.

Photo by Miss Cheesemonger

Veronique Kherian

Veronique is based in San Francisco, where she actively involved with the California Artisan Cheese Guild and her blog, Miss Cheesemonger. she began her cheese blog in September 2009, when she started working in a Southern California cheese shop as a cheesemonger. That gig lasted one glorious year, but the blog continues at www.misscheesemonger.com. She is in the process of switching careers to work full time in cheese and specialty foods, ideally in import/export work! If you are social media-inclined, she's on Twitter at @msscheesemonger and on the Facebook page Miss Cheesemonger.

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