HOME > Chowhound > Cheese >

Best place in the Us to Eat Cheese

c
cloudship Apr 24, 2010 10:44 AM

I travel a lot, and am always looking for interesting places to eat when I travel. I am also a cheesaholic, and so I am trying to find the best restaurant to try cheese. Can be a cheese plate, flight, cart - whatever. But since I am usually in a hotel room I really dont have the means to purchase a chunk at a market and bring it back.

What are your favorite places to get cheese? Extra points for places that you can comfortably order just a cheese plate or flight, and for places that are a bit casual.

  1. Click to Upload a photo (10 MB limit)
Delete
  1. thew RE: cloudship Apr 24, 2010 11:06 AM

    artisanal in NYC

    1. m
      maple99 RE: cloudship Apr 25, 2010 06:11 AM

      Well, to keep the conversion going, I will suggest Delachaise in New Orleans. Probably not really the best in the country, but an extensive interesting selection nonetheless.

      1. limster RE: cloudship Apr 25, 2010 07:29 AM

        Farmer's markets in cheese making areas will often have stalls with local cheeses. Some may offer samples, while others could sell smallish pieces. Asking nicely for them to sell a smaller piece often works; being passionate about a particular cheese they're selling can also be persuasive. Do go early, so that you can have the extra attention of the stall, without affecting their interactions with other customers. It's as casual as it gets, and one can't beat talking about the cheese with the sellers who may sometimes also be involved in making the cheese. Can also work in a good cheese shop if the owners are there and they're not busy.

        1 Reply
        1. re: limster
          boyzoma RE: limster Apr 25, 2010 09:19 AM

          +1 - My DH and I love to sample the cheeses at our local Farmer's Market. There are so many great tastes out there. Sometimes I can't even decide which one to buy!

        2. nomadchowwoman RE: cloudship Apr 25, 2010 08:02 AM

          Ok, I am going to make another New Orleans rec, b/c it fits your criteria to a tee: St. James Cheese Company (whose proprietor previously ran a centuries-old cheese shop in london, so he comes pedigreed). It's a wonderful little shop, focusing on artisanal cheeses, with friendly owners, knowledgeable staff, great cheese selection, casual atmosphere. It doubles as a cafe; they, of course, welcome orders for cheese plates. They also serve great salads and sandwiches.

          If, however, you want attention from the staff to chat w/ them about the cheese, avoid going during the super-busy lunch hour(s). The place is justifiably popular.

          It's on a busy little stretch of Prytania St., thickly studded with other chowish delights (local ice creamery, good sushi, French, Thai, and contemporary creole restaurants, wine store).

          http://stjamescheese.com/grocery2.html

          1. t
            tarteaucitron RE: cloudship Apr 25, 2010 11:29 AM

            If you are a cheesaholic, you should check out the Vermont Cheese Trail as soon as you have a chance. I ventured there in the dead of winter and so could not tell, out of the few sit-down places that remained open, whether there would be enough places to serve you cheese. However I still had a great time, touring creameries, sampling various cheeses, chatting with the farmers and sitting down for their burgers (made from the meat right from the farm). Lovely, casual barn setting for the meals. Got a van-load of great products to bring home too. Highly recommended.

            As for your specific needs, you can check out the link to see if there are actual restaurants specializing in cheese. There are a lot on that trail, and a lot of information there:

            http://www.vtcheese.com/cheesetrail.htm

            Hope that helps.

            1 Reply
            1. re: tarteaucitron
              fmcoxe6188 RE: tarteaucitron Apr 30, 2010 06:01 AM

              2nd this! When I think US Cheese- I think Vermont

            2. c
              cheesemaestro RE: cloudship Apr 25, 2010 03:00 PM

              Picholine and Artisanal in NYC. Tria in Philadelphia.

              3 Replies
              1. re: cheesemaestro
                c
                cloudship RE: cheesemaestro Apr 26, 2010 07:25 PM

                I have never actually done the Cheesetrail, but living in Mass I have had the chance to try many of those cremerie's products. In Worcester there is a place called Armsby Abbey which often features several local cheeses.

                Never would have thought of New Orleans for cheese!

                1. re: cloudship
                  nomadchowwoman RE: cloudship Apr 26, 2010 09:26 PM

                  It's not New Orleans, per se, but St. James Cheese Co. that meets your stated criteria--great cheese selection, casual place where you can order just a cheese plate. It could be anywhere, but it happens to be in New Orleans, should you find yourself traveling here.

                2. re: cheesemaestro
                  Delucacheesemonger RE: cheesemaestro Apr 28, 2010 11:32 AM

                  Second Picholine

                3. c
                  CDouglas RE: cloudship Apr 28, 2010 09:24 AM

                  If you are ever in Oregon try a farmer's market where the Rogue Creamery team has a set up: http://www.roguecreamery.com/pilot.as...

                  The Rogue River blue is really exceptional. It looks like they offer cheddars, curd and fresh butter at the farmer's markets too.

                  1 Reply
                  1. re: CDouglas
                    boyzoma RE: CDouglas Apr 28, 2010 11:23 AM

                    Tillamook Cheese in Oregon is also wonderful. If you have a chance, go to the actual creamery in Tillamook on the coast. It's a fun thing to watch them make it and you can usually get fresh curds as well. It's about an hour and a half drive from Portland.

                  2. r
                    rochfood RE: cloudship Apr 28, 2010 11:34 AM

                    "Homer...Have you been up all night eating cheese ?"
                    --Marge Simpson.

                    1. b
                      Booklegger451 RE: cloudship Apr 29, 2010 10:29 AM

                      I'll throw in a vote for the Cowgirl Creamery, either at their actual creamery in Point Reyes Station, CA, or their storefront in the Ferry Building in San Francisco.

                      5 Replies
                      1. re: Booklegger451
                        nomadchowwoman RE: Booklegger451 Apr 29, 2010 04:11 PM

                        No question that CC makes wonderful cheese, but I've been to both these places, and while I think you could order a cheese plate at Point Reyes (there was a cafe, as I recall), the Ferry Bldg. store was strictly a retail outlet.

                        1. re: nomadchowwoman
                          b
                          Booklegger451 RE: nomadchowwoman Apr 29, 2010 08:51 PM

                          Ok, I'll admit, the cheese plate I had at the retail location was in fact several whole wedges of cheese... but with the bread next door at Acme, and the waterfront right there... Well, let's just say it was a long, leisurely lunch.

                          1. re: nomadchowwoman
                            Ruth Lafler RE: nomadchowwoman Apr 29, 2010 08:53 PM

                            True. But you can take your cheese down the hall at the Ferry Building to the Wine shop and have it with a glass of wine.

                            I think the Bay Area is a great place to eat cheese these days: good cheese shops, local artisan cheeses and cheese plates have become very trendy in restaurants.

                            1. re: nomadchowwoman
                              c
                              cheesemaestro RE: nomadchowwoman Apr 30, 2010 09:56 AM

                              News reported just this week: CC at the Ferry Building will be expanding into an adjoining vacated space and will include a cafe.

                              http://www.gourmetretailer.com/gourme...

                              1. re: cheesemaestro
                                Ruth Lafler RE: cheesemaestro Apr 30, 2010 10:15 AM

                                Ah, that would be the old Lulu Petite space. Cool, thanks!

                          2. s
                            Sherri RE: cloudship Apr 29, 2010 04:31 PM

                            Order the cheese course at Restaurant Gary Danko, San Francisco. You won't be sorry. Several months later, I'm still dreaming about it. Their cheese cart has at least forty selections and the servers are very knowledgeable. I don't know about ordering just the cheese at the bar, you might call to ask.

                            1. escargot3 RE: cloudship May 6, 2010 08:52 AM

                              If you're in the vicinity of Berkeley, there none better than the venerable Cheese Board, across the street from Chez Panisse.

                              Plus it's been collectively-owned for decades.

                              1. Delucacheesemonger RE: cloudship Feb 6, 2011 06:56 AM

                                Just went to a LA restaurant that had the best cheese board l have ever seen. 20-30 cheeses on the tray, the server was very well informed, and l did not know half of them. That has never happened before. All were in perfect shape as well. The restaurant was Providence.

                                Show Hidden Posts