The invitation read:
"We find ourselves in the possession of perhaps the finest collection of artisan cheese ever assembled, or to be assembled again."
Nearly swooning, I paused to catch my breath and then reread the sentence again. Elation!
"We did not pay for these cheeses. They were props for a book, forthcoming
from an English cheesemonger of considerable reknown. The photoshoot is over, but the cheeses remain."
"It wouldn't be right to sell them (though the profit margins are indeed attractive) and I can't bring myself just to give them away for nothing (searching for a pithy Blogojevic quote here)."
"One thing is clear: They must be eaten soon. And soon."
"We have decided, therefore, to throw a hastily planned party."
"Rubiner's Cheesemongers & Grocers and Culture Magazine cordially invite you to an Emergency American Artisan Cheese Disposal Cocktail Party and Benefit."
Some of the stars were the Sally Jackson Cow, Goat and Sheep. Available in Los Angeles at The Cheese Store of Silverlake, they describe it as:
"Sally and Roger Jackson were among the first people in Washington state to sell artisanal goat cheese – for that matter, they were among the first people in the U.S. to bring back the craft of artisanal cheesemaking. Chefs in Seattle still remember Sally selling wheels of cheese out the back of her car twenty years ago. These days, cheese sellers come to her, hoping for a small wheel of her raw goat cheese. The cheese is wrapped in leaves and tied up like a delicious little package, adding a touch of elegance to cheese that is otherwise quite rustic: earthy, gamey and herbal."
"Sally Jackson and her husband Roger create small-batches of raw-milk goat, sheep and cow cheeses on a small farm in the Okanagon Highlands of Eastern Washington state."
Cypress Grove was well represented. Humbolt Fog is one of my faves. I'd never tried Cypress Grove's Truffle Tremor. Tasty. The Goat's Leap Eclipse was another surprise, similar to Humbolt Fog with a strip of ash through the middle and crowned with a star anise.
Avonlea Clothbound Cheddar from Ontario was a nutty, fruity cheddar. From www.verygoodfood.ca:
"Avonlea Clothbound Cheddar from Prince Edward Island is made of raw milk from PEI Holsteins, wrapped in muslin rubbed with lard, and aged for 12 months. The resulting cheese is a deep, yellow colour with a crumbly texture and creamy tasting interior."
It looked like there were 50-75 of the best artisan cheeses I'd ever seen. The collection ranged from small scale, obscure producers, to large scale production, from both the United States and Canada, some of the best cheeses around. A cheese lovers dream.
Enjoy the rest of the cheese photos.
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