One of the most unusual parts of working in the food industry is acknowledging obscure food holidays. April, for instance, is "National Grilled Cheese Month." There are certainly other important dates in April (Easter, my anniversary and my birthday, to name a few), but we will be putting time aside to celebrate melted cheese on toast.
With the possible exception of Cheddar, no cheese is as misunderstood as Gouda. Nascent cheese enthusiasts are encumbered with the misconception that Gouda is some lesser form of cheese, one that either comes smoked or “regular.” This perception of commodity has hampered Gouda’s reputation in America, but the reality is that the nation’s best cheese shops offer Goudas that rival the best cheeses in the world.
Very few meals remind me of my childhood as much as a tuna melt. My mother was the primary chef in our household, and she excelled (still does) in all areas of Italian cuisine. On the rare occasion that my father cooked, my brother and I were treated to distinctly American dinners.
Waking up in Amsterdam for the first time is like waking up on Christmas day. The excitement was palpable and expectations were high as I rolled out of bed and meandered through the morning routine. Today, we are touring Friesland with Betty Koster. Betty is the owner of the L'Amuse Cheese Shop, the finest in Amsterdam, and is an international ambassador for all Dutch cheeses.
The day began with a trip to the Fruitiere a Comte de Gellin. A fruitiere is where the cheese is produced before it is transferred to an affineur for maturation. Being in peak season, this particular fruitiere is making eight wheels of Comte per day, approximately 550 pounds.
I am sitting across from the Hertz kiosk at the Geneva airport, propping myself up on my luggage. In the past 30 hours, I have not slept or changed clothes, and exhaustion is forcing its inevitability on me. But as weary as I feel, the excitement of this trip offers constant rejuvenation.
Throughout the course of the day, we mongers routinely taste twenty to thirty cheeses. Opening a new wheel? Sample it. Can't recall the subtleties of that obscure cheese from the Italian Alps? Better take a reminder-nibble. Just received a batch of samples from a northwest Pennsylvania farm? You get the idea.
Last night, Di Bruno Bros was proud to participate in Feastival, a charity event benefiting Philadelphia Live Arts. While donations, auctions and raffles are still being calculated, it is not too early to conclude that the event was a huge success. Mayor Nutter and Governor Rendell each auctioned a pair of Phillies playoff tickets in [...]
Last night we tried something a little different for Happy Hour...gotta keep those regulars on their toes! Instead of pairing three cheeses with three beers, we paired three cheeses with one beer. Using Cigar City's Jai Alai, we explored how one style of beer reacts differently to different styles of cheese. Forcing ourselves to think outside the box, we discovered some successful pairings in places we least expected to find them.