Monthly Archives: March 2010

Links du Fromage

Tallegio Grilled Cheese Sandwich

Tallegio Grilled Cheese Sandwich

Because the world of cheese is wide and vast and I can’t possibly meet all your dairy needs, here are some of my favorite Links du Fromage this month. Feel free to leave links to your own favorites in this post’s comment section.

News

Walmart, “Lacing up Gloves in Price Battle,” Diary Herd

Getting a Butter maker’s license in Wisconsin, Cheese Underground

Cheese, Cheese, and Fromage Links

On Jasper Hill’s Moses Sleeper, Cheese and Champagne.

Haystack Peak, Cheese and Champagne (In fact, why don’t you just stay on the page. Check out their write-up on Green Hill Dairy too.)

Rogue River Blue, on Vanilla and Garlic.

Tickelmore and Coolea at the Washington Post.

Matt from Matt Bites (hallow be your photos) is cheesing it up, video style. Don’t miss it.

Fat Bottomed Girl, by Bleating Heart Sheep at Cheese Underground.

Recipes: Goat Cheese Focus

Swiss Chard, Goat Cheese, and Prosciutto Tart, Sweet Tartlette.

Goat Cheese Zucchini Rolls, Apples and Butter.

Bergamot Marmalade, at David Lebovitz (to accompany a fresh goat cheese).

More of My Bizness

Don’t Turn up Your Nose at a Stinky Cheese,” NPR Kitchen Window (original recipe photo pictured above).

I’m teaching two classes at the SF Cheese School this spring, one of which will be right after I return from a trip to France (seasonal goat cheeses, here I come!). And… I just found out they are both are sold-out (not unusual for their classes) but they have a waiting list. Plus, they have some other beauties you should check out that are not yet full.

Stephanie Stiavetti featured a “Food Blogger Spotlight” interview with me on Wasabimon.

Just published a review on the Tartine cookbook on The Good Taste Review.

I am POSITIVE there are links that I missed, especially those pertaining to small-production dairy happenings. I’ll love you if you add your links to mine in the comment section below.

Thank you for linking!

Andante Dairy: A Case of Cheese Reverence

Andante Quatro Stargioni

Andante Quatro Stargioni

Fervent cheese lovers know that if one spots an Andante creation at their local shop and leaves without buying it, their copy of the “Cheese Bible” will be revoked without question and that, suddenly, the well-worn Fromage Forever T-shirt they made with puff paints will mysteriously disappear. Why? Because the cheese gods are watching and missing such a rare and delicious opportunity would severely offend them.

Andante is sort of a waiting list cheese. Except that there is no official list that I know of, and waiting isn’t sensical. It would be much more efficient to: a) pounce, b) befriend a local cheesemonger who will call you as soon as it lands, or c) make a reservation at one of the best restaurants in the country in which the rare piece of Soyong Scanlan’s creations are served.

Andante cheeses are noted for their balance, their harmony, and like the tempo mark after which her dairy is named, the slower speed they inspire in those engaging them. They demand full, close-your-eyes and put-your-knife-down attention. It takes time to consider their beauty just as it requires time to make good cheese.

Former scientist Soyoung Scanlan makes all of her cheeses by hand in an old facility used by Laura Chenel before she went big (and many years before Soyoung’s chevre replaced Chenel’s at Chez Panisse). From cutting the curds to cleaning the milk vats, Scanlan does it all on her own.

The results of such devotion are often telling. Scanlan has an exacting eye and her cheeses are prettier than a lady bug in a field of wildflowers. And the flavors, well in this case, the demand speaks for itself. Scanlan sources organic sheep, cow and goat’s milk from neighboring farms to make her cheeses, and sacrifices little to nothing in her cheesemaking. If she doesn’t have time to make her usual assortment of cheeses to her high standards (and very often she doesn’t), a restaurant might not get their triple-crème from her that week.

Each and every cheese that makes it out the door, she feels, should express the flavors of the milk and land from which it came. Because it takes time to craft such delicious expressions of fermented milk, and there is only one Scanlan, there are very few of her cheeses to go around. Hence why they are harder to find than a burger at a zen center.

At any given time, Scanlan makes her “standard” creations from each milk, makes a couple mixed milk cheeses, and creates a seasonal morsel or two that celebrates the varying flavors of the surrounding landscape. Some of my favorites Scanlan classics are the Picolo, triple-creme Jersey cow’s milk and the Acapella, an ashed goat’s milk pryamid.

The cheese pictured above is a seasonal mixed-milk cheese named Quatro Stargioni that I was lucky enough to find at Market Hall in Oakland. It was the last of the winter versions, and is topped with bourbon-soaked golden raisins, which lent the cheese a lightly spicy flavor and a touch of acidity to the already sweet milk. The Quatro Stargioni is a blend of cow, goat and sheep’s milk, the mixing of which is more frequently seen in Italy than the United States. The spring version of this is out now, and topped with mustard flowers.

Further reading:

At the San Francisco Ferry Building’s Farmer’s Market.

In Cheese by Hand.

With Janet Fletcher in the San Francisco Chronicle.

Have you had a chance to taste Andante’s creations?

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