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Process for Choosing Cheese of the Month ( April 2013)

I think it maybe time for selecting new cheese of the month

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  1. Sounds good, jpr.

    Q: Has the decision for how we begin the selection process been clarified ie: is the CofM coordinator the person who starts the month off or can any CH begin?

    1. I think we should take nominations beginning in the middle of the previous month (Ides of March tomorrow) and some quant person (me) will tally them up and select one. An open cheese conclave, not unlike choosing a Pope, although I lack the white smoke accessory.
      Criteria are more important for a month long discussion. Think of cheeses that have mystery, many uses, unique qualities, you just can't figure them out, or you want to shout their deliciousness from a mountain top.
      JMO

      2 Replies
      1. re: Veggo

        Do u want to start a new topic for recommendations/nominations? or continue here
        my suggestions
        continue with Italy and other cheeses in area
        of Lombardy
        Robiola Lombardia
        Robiola Piemonte

        or
        gouda

        or
        cheddar

        1. re: jpr54_1

          jpr54_1, thanks for the follow-up and suggestions. I am in no way trying to take ownership of this new board as it crawls out of the promordial soup into the real world, lizard-like. Let's see what other ideas come forward in the next couple weeks, it will probably be fun.
          Veggo

      2. I suggest you change from one month to the other using common, readily available cheeses, & then less common ones.

        It's obvious - myself included - that not everyone was able to snag a piece of Tallegio this month, or afford it even if they could find it. That doesn't make us commoners - lol!

        For instance, I LOVE Dill-spiked Havarti - several brands of which are available in many supermarkets - & have sampled a number of brands. It's a lovely cheese in it's own right, but also is fabulous melted over butter-poached salmon.

        Yes, I know. Quite a few of you cheese connoisseurs will diss "Dill Havarti" as beneath you. But does the "Cheese" section of Chow really have to be about the equivalent of fine vintage wine?

        I'm not suggesting "Dill Havarti" as the "Cheese of the Month"; just that I think you should consider more commonly available/popular cheeses as well.

        (Otherwise, frankly, this board will end up going the route of the "Wine" board. Too sad.)

        12 Replies
        1. re: Bacardi1

          what are your suggestions?

          Havarti?
          I have not tried this cheese-sounds interesting to me

          1. re: Bacardi1

            Bacardi1, whatever is my participation here I want to assiduously avoid the stratosphere of the wine board, that tramples me like the bulls in Pamplona.
            I'm danish. Havarti is danish, and I like it. And salmon. With dill. There remains the provocative Italian question about cheese with fish (I do a salmon dish with parmesan). Havarti makes a great melting cheese, from burgers to grilled sandwiches. This board should be a real melting pot for cheese lovers across every geography and spectrum.
            JMO

            1. re: Bacardi1

              While I have contributed nothing to the cheese board, I have been reading it regularly and just want to throw in my two cents worth. I would welcome a variety of cheeses over time representing a range of prices and accessibility.

              Right now I am frustrated because while I live only 20 miles from Seattle, my 90,000 population suburb is a wasteland of chain restaurants, etc., and apparently along with that is a limited availability of cheeses besides the usual suspects. I have been to the three grocery stores most likely to have good cheese selections and have struck out on Taleggio so far. Hrmphhhh. By the end of the weekend, I vow to have found it *somewhere* in the area as it sounds lovely and I want to try it!

              I really applaud the idea of making the cheese of the month an opportunity to discover and celebrate interesting and tasty cheeses, not just expensive and hard-to-find cheeses.

              1. re: jlhinwa

                jlhinwa, considering your input and deet13's choices for 2 sheeps's milk cheeses, I think a C-of-the-M general sheeps' milk cheese topic would work, in the near future.

                1. re: Veggo

                  Is there a danger that by making such a generic selection as "every sheeps milk cheese" that more specific types will be out of the running to be chosen in the future because they've already been discussed and chomped on as a genre?

                  1. re: Veggo

                    Thank you very much for the consideration. I am happy to go along with whatever is decided is good for the group.

                    If I were queen of the cheese board (which would be a really bad idea because I still have so much to learn), I would pick a range of price points over time, and sometimes choose a great everyday cheese that can be readily found even in suburban wastelands. :-)

                    Most of all, I am excited to try new things, no matter the price or accessibility and am going to make it my mission to find Taleggio before March is over!

                  2. re: jlhinwa

                    Jihinwa,

                    If you decide to make the 20 mile trek into Seattle, here are some places that usually have Tallegio:

                    Big Johns PFI (and if you've never been here, worth visiting for more than just their excellent cheese selection)

                    DeLaurenti's at the Market (best cheese selection in town that I know of, and lots of other high-end goodies)

                    Whole Foods (Expensive, but has a consistently very good cheese selection)

                    1. re: Booklegger451

                      Thank you so much for the cheese-locating tips. That is very helpful. I know about DeLaurenti's and WF, but not Big Johns. That sounds worth making the trek for alone. My biggest problem is time...I work full time, have a busy 12-year-old, am PTA president and a few other things thrown in for fun, so it is a rare occasion that I get to venture north for shopping. Sigh. We used to have a delightful Metropolitan Market just a couple miles away but it closed down because it was not profitable at this location. Double sigh. There is one in Tacoma that I will hit up this week. It it's probably a 20 min drive out of my way, it worth it for the cheese counter and if anyone around here has Taleggio, they would.

                    2. re: jlhinwa

                      Does De Laurentii's still exist? That place was part of my intro to good cheese, but that was a while ago. I've often missed it, living back east now as I do.

                      1. re: Jay F

                        It sure does, Jay, and it's still fabulous.

                        1. re: Booklegger451

                          Well, then that's where to go for cheese. I used to live across the street, and my cat and I practically lived on antipasti.

                      2. re: jlhinwa

                        Quick update: I made it to Met Market in Tacoma today and found Taleggio. I am so thrilled. I think this store will be a great cheese source for me going forward...yay!

                        Off to the Taleggio thread to read all about it before I break it open.

                    3. I have so much to learn about cheese. I'd be happy with any vote and I have no preference as to what is selected. If I can find x cheese and can afford to buy x cheese I might purchase locally but mostly I'll be reading along, asking questions and if and when that cheese crosses my path, I'll understand far better what I'm buying as a result.

                      I mean how vivid an experience can we have online? I'm content with all the well written words already on the cheese pages...descriptions by those who actually eat the cheese, recommendations from industry pros...and a good deal of Q&A. Fabulous!

                      KISS (keep it simple stupid) works for me!

                      1. My choices:

                        Cheddar (You could toss pretty much any cheddar at me and I'd be happy.)
                        Comte
                        Manchego (sheep's milk)
                        Petit Basque (sheep's milk also)

                        Why not concentrate on cheesemaking regions(like France, Spain, Greece, and so on), and then make the monthly selection a type of cheese from that specific region?

                        5 Replies
                        1. re: deet13

                          I just had Manchego in an omelette this morning. Really enjoyed the sharpness. Costco's cheese dept this week is featuring Kerrygold Dubliner (2lb) at $12.99 was hard to pass up, so I didn't. Nice elements of a cheddar; ideal for melting (grill cheese!).

                          1. re: HillJ

                            Amen to that. I love cooking with Manchego. You're right, so long as you don't overpower it, it adds a nice sharp bite to anything you add it to.

                            My MiL has a Manchego and roasted pepper tart recipe that is killer. Some day I'll get her to share it with me...

                            I like Kerrygold Dubliner. That's probably one of my favorite snacking/platter cheeses.

                            1. re: HillJ

                              Hello HillJ

                              I just bought a Kerrygold reserve cheddar that I had for lunch with some dried cranberries and nuts. It was a happy lunch!

                              I was pleased to see you and TDQ and other familiar faces. Makes me less nervous.

                              1. re: ItalianNana

                                You're in excellent company, Ital N! No worries. We're all learn from each other.

                            2. re: deet13

                              I think CHEDDAR would be an excellent choice -- so many to choose from, from cheap to very expensive. Also, lots of differences in age, origin, appearance, taste, texture, etc., to discuss.