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Volunteers for Cheese (Plate) of the Month Coordinator (April to September 2013)

Melanie Wong Mar 16, 2013 10:30 AM

Sign up here for be the coordinator of the month for the cheese (plate) of the month discussion. Reply by stating which month from April to September you'll take on these duties, first come, first served. The coordinator will select the cheese or cheeses from the communal list for this time period as posted here,
and kick off the discussion at the start of the month. This need not be the absolute most popular selection from the list. And the inevitable "other duties as assigned" may come up.

Concerned that more cheese knowledge is required than you have? Not to worry. This is an administrative task and any one who posts here is qualified.

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  1. Veggo RE: Melanie Wong Mar 16, 2013 10:39 AM

    Veggo volunteers for May.

    1. p
      Phoebe RE: Melanie Wong Mar 21, 2013 07:42 PM

      I'll volunteer for June. But..someone still needs to step up to the plate for April????

      First come, first serve, your choice of cheese. I'd like to know what administrative tasks are involved other than starting the monthly thread?

      1 Reply
      1. re: Phoebe
        Melanie Wong RE: Phoebe Mar 22, 2013 01:11 PM

        Thank you, Phoebe (and Veggo too). Yes, we still need someone for April.

        Beats me, I thought there'd be a land office grab to volunteer for a month and have the privilege of choosing one's own cheese(s) interests for discussion. Really, the only responsibility is to pick one or more cheeses to talk about that month and start the thread. The job title, "coordinator", is much too lofty for what's entailed and shouldn't scare folks off. I jokingly put in other duties as assigned because it's a stock phrase in every job description. :) We just have to wait and see how this evolves. I'll just say that I can't think of anything scary that's required. But given the hurt feelings that seem to abound in getting to this point, wanting to lay low is understandable. I'd like to check out of here myself but I hope we can put those bumps in the road behind us.

        I suppose one could offer up some explanation of why a particular choice for the month from among those nominated. Maybe the cheese was selected because you've never tasted it before and want to learn about it in depth. Or could be that it started with the letter "A" and you're exploring the world of cheese in alphabetical order. Perhaps a dart board selection . . . close your eyes and pick one randomly. Or it sparked the most interesting comments or "recommendations" in the nomination thread.

      2. Jay F RE: Melanie Wong Mar 22, 2013 02:34 PM

        Hi, Melanie, and everyone. I'm going to repost something I just posted in the thread titled Cheese of the Month (Week, Etc.) :

        I'd rather wait until at least May to play Cheese Host of the Month, mainly because I've never seen a ChOTM thread.

        When I do, it would likely be one or more triple-cremes, such as St. Andre (my favorite eating cheese), Pierre Robert (which I haven't even tried yet, but I saw at WF), St. Angel, maybe Explorateur. Maybe even Brie.

        I don't drink, so wine recommendations would have to come from someone else (though I remember liking whites, including some fruity ones, like Gewurtztraminer).

        I would do this any month, really.

        My favorite cheese of all is Parmigiano-Reggiano (see my avatar), and I would be happy to talk about that, too. Though these days, I mainly use it in cooking, as eating too much of it gives me headaches.

        3 Replies
        1. re: Jay F
          Melanie Wong RE: Jay F Mar 22, 2013 02:57 PM

          Thanks for sharing your thoughts, JayF.

          I see you've found the March 2013 Cheese of the Month thread for Taleggio now,

          Please do add your ideas for candidates for ChOTM to the nomination thread,

          Maybe someone will pick one of your suggestions as their own. Would you like to sign up for July?

          1. re: Melanie Wong
            Jay F RE: Melanie Wong Mar 22, 2013 03:40 PM

            Yes. I will sign up for July. That'll give me time to see whether I like fromage Pierre Robert and others.

            1. re: Jay F
              HillJ RE: Jay F Mar 22, 2013 06:55 PM

              I'll sign up for August and Jay F I'm posting my reply attached to yours so it falls directly under your volunteer spot for July.


        2. e
          EmBrooks RE: Melanie Wong Mar 22, 2013 03:42 PM

          I am happy to take April. We are "unplugging" and leaving town for a week starting March 29th, so I will start the new thread that morning then will be radio silent for a while. I hope that is cool - it will give us all a couple extra days to pick up our new cheese!

          I have very little cheese knowledge, but will post some links I find helpful....I know the experts will take it from there!

          20 Replies
          1. re: EmBrooks
            Fowler RE: EmBrooks Mar 22, 2013 06:03 PM

            No offence intended, but you are going to start this new initiative but not be able to monitor it during the infancy? I think anyone could do that.

            1. re: Fowler
              EmBrooks RE: Fowler Mar 22, 2013 06:31 PM

              I am not sure what you are asking? Based on the March boards a cheese was chosen, some people complained (but in the end tried something new), some people jumped on board and by the end of it several people had tried a new cheese and some learned more about a cheese they already knew and loved.

              I volunteered because no one else did and I enjoyed the March COTM and wanted to see it continue with a minimum of hand wringing - if you would like to take April, I am happy to let you have it.

              1. re: EmBrooks
                Veggo RE: EmBrooks Mar 22, 2013 06:37 PM

                Em, just run with it. I'll take the baton in May. Thanks for volunteering!

                1. re: EmBrooks
                  Fowler RE: EmBrooks Mar 22, 2013 06:49 PM

                  I once again will mention that I intend no offence at all but thought you were going to be starting the thread but then right away leaving town for a week and being "radio silent" or in other words not communicating for a while?

                  1. re: Fowler
                    Veggo RE: Fowler Mar 22, 2013 06:56 PM

                    I'll pick up the slack. 3 weeks outa 4 ain't bad, better than Meatloaf's 2 outa 3, by 8.3%.

                    1. re: Veggo
                      pikawicca RE: Veggo Mar 22, 2013 07:00 PM

                      Bless you, my son. I'd volunteer if I had a clue how to do it. (My computer skills sync to about 1990.)

                      1. re: pikawicca
                        HillJ RE: pikawicca Mar 22, 2013 07:03 PM

                        pikawicca, take September! Then the next six months are good to go and we can call this part of the process over and out!

                        1. re: HillJ
                          pikawicca RE: HillJ Mar 22, 2013 07:10 PM

                          So, you are willing to hold my hand every step of the way? If so, I'll do it.

                          1. re: pikawicca
                            HillJ RE: pikawicca Mar 22, 2013 07:11 PM

                            You know I will :-) and I'll expect you to provide the same in August.

                      2. re: Veggo
                        HillJ RE: Veggo Mar 22, 2013 07:04 PM

                        Just remind me again (this time with feeling, V!) now that I've volunteered for August I only need to select from the list of nominations left by August, correct a mundo?

                        1. re: HillJ
                          Veggo RE: HillJ Mar 22, 2013 07:15 PM

                          Dealers' choice. Consider nominations, general availability, utilization, cost, maybe wine pairings, as an ingredient, mystique, interesting history, seasonality, make most of us more informed and interested, deliciousness. Laughing Cow doesn't qualify..:)

                          1. re: Veggo
                            HillJ RE: Veggo Mar 22, 2013 07:17 PM

                            Okay, in other words no pressure :)

                            plenty of time to think about it...and keeping this FUN!

                            1. re: Veggo
                              ItalianNana RE: Veggo Mar 22, 2013 07:41 PM

                              Well Hell's bells!

                              Here I was, screwing my courage to the sticking place...dreamily fantasizing about doing a month, introducing everyone to the delights of Laughing Cow paired with an amusing white Zin on the rocks! :-D

                              I'm really pleased with the decisions thus far. Can't wait, guys. Thanks to those who stepped up.

                            2. re: HillJ
                              HillJ RE: HillJ Apr 25, 2013 06:01 AM

                              Open call for an August volunteer, I won't be available.

                            3. re: Veggo
                              Fowler RE: Veggo Mar 22, 2013 07:22 PM


                              Well, if you cannot be serious about this monumental subject, I guess I cannot either. :-)

                              1. re: Fowler
                                HillJ RE: Fowler Mar 22, 2013 07:27 PM

                                Yeah Fowler don't spoil this precious moment with a serious question!!! I'm going to have to up my workouts to justify all this cheese indulgence.

                                1. re: Fowler
                                  Veggo RE: Fowler Mar 22, 2013 07:28 PM

                                  We are not acquainted, but I assure you I seriously want to see this board succeed. Cheese is fascinating, global, and there are very experienced minds here who contribute their knowledge pro bono for the love of it.

                                2. re: Veggo
                                  EmBrooks RE: Veggo Mar 23, 2013 05:21 AM

                                  Thanks Veggo. Hopefully it won't be too much extra work since (my understanding of) the roll is that it is to kick off the topic, not moderation. You have already done a lot to get this off the ground. I just want to eat cheese!

                                  1. re: EmBrooks
                                    jlhinwa RE: EmBrooks Mar 23, 2013 10:10 AM

                                    Me too, EmBrooks! I am so elated by my experience with Taleggio that I cannot wait for April!

                          2. re: EmBrooks
                            Melanie Wong RE: EmBrooks Mar 22, 2013 10:00 PM

                            And I'm happy that you've signed on for April! So cool, it's hot. The job really is that simple: pick a cheese or two from the list and start a new topic. Anything more is entirely up to you. And yes, if you don't have the info yourself, you can quote from other sources and include links. Doing that kind of research is the best way to learn.

                            I'll add a few general comments shortly. Enjoy your spring break and again, thank you!

                          3. Bacardi1 RE: Melanie Wong Mar 22, 2013 03:46 PM

                            I've completely given up on the "Cheese Forum".

                            You folks have taken a good idea & turned it into a cornucopia of confusion & overworked discussions on nothing. And this is just for getting things started. This isn't the U.N. - thank God.

                            Have fun guys.

                            2 Replies
                            1. re: Bacardi1
                              ItalianNana RE: Bacardi1 Mar 22, 2013 07:43 PM

                              Actually, if the folks here ran the UN it would be less corrupt and more effective...IMHO

                              1. re: Bacardi1
                                jlhinwa RE: Bacardi1 Mar 23, 2013 10:14 AM

                                Awww, sorry you feel that way. I think it is pretty typical to fumble around a bit when setting up something new. I hope you will give the cheese forum another try in a month or two. There are obviously a lot of knowledgeable people here as well as eager-to-learn types (like myself, who may not contribute much initially).

                                I have already found that this forum has enriched my cheese-eating experience and am very thankful for that.

                                In fact, I am off to brave Costco on a Saturday (something I rarely do!) because I want to check out the blues in the cheese section.

                              2. Melanie Wong RE: Melanie Wong Mar 23, 2013 11:28 AM

                                To recap:

                                April - EmBrooks

                                May - Veggo

                                June - Phoebe

                                July - Jay F

                                August - HillJ

                                September - still up for grabs

                                14 Replies
                                1. re: Melanie Wong
                                  jlhinwa RE: Melanie Wong Mar 23, 2013 01:42 PM

                                  I will take September.

                                  1. re: jlhinwa
                                    Melanie Wong RE: jlhinwa Mar 23, 2013 02:04 PM

                                    Splendid! We have a full slate. Thanks to all the volunteers.

                                    1. re: Melanie Wong
                                      Jay F RE: Melanie Wong Mar 23, 2013 03:57 PM

                                      Thank you, too, Melanie. Good job organizing it all.

                                      1. re: Jay F
                                        Melanie Wong RE: Jay F Mar 23, 2013 04:19 PM

                                        You're welcome. Not my doing, actually. This process was one of three proposed by "cheesemaestro", and then selected by majority vote among those who participated in a poll. I merely asked the community to stay the course and implemented accordingly. We're set for now. And let's keep the convo going on how we want to change/evolve.

                                        1. re: Melanie Wong
                                          ItalianNana RE: Melanie Wong Mar 23, 2013 10:35 PM

                                          Hurray and thanks to everyone for volunteering. I hope one of our coordinators will start a conversation about terms used in describing cheeses. It will really help if we're all on the same page or at least in the same chapter. I'm looking forward to this.

                                          1. re: ItalianNana
                                            Melanie Wong RE: ItalianNana Mar 23, 2013 11:20 PM

                                            If you want to talk about cheese terminology, please feel free to kick that off in a new topic. That's a good idea.

                                            It is most curious. Every time I've suggested to anyone to initiate a thread on this board for his/her question, no one does. I don't understand this behavior at all. Very weird.

                                            ETA: That's not meant as a personal criticism. I'm simply baffled. I have difficulty seeing how we can sustain a Cheese Board if this reluctance to bring topics to the table is so widespread. The burden needs to be on ALL OF US to make something happen.

                                            1. re: Melanie Wong
                                              ItalianNana RE: Melanie Wong Mar 24, 2013 08:09 AM


                                              You are quite right. I myself am a bit puzzled by some of us on this board. I think it's related to the great gap in knowledge between those who are clearly worldly cheese fanciers and those who are abject novices. I am getting over that.

                                              HillJ has started the thread and I'm having a great time with the first link!

                                              1. re: Melanie Wong
                                                Fowler RE: Melanie Wong Mar 24, 2013 09:02 AM

                                                "Every time I've suggested to anyone to initiate a thread on this board for his/her question, no one does. I don't understand this behavior at all."

                                                I am guilty as charged, but prior to sentencing I would like to say that I have been suffering from a terrible case of March Madness which has significantly reduced the amount of time I have to post right now.

                                                I do promise to get that Liederkranz versus Limburger post started soon though.

                                                1. re: Fowler
                                                  Melanie Wong RE: Fowler Mar 24, 2013 10:17 AM

                                                  Thanks to you and ItalianNana for being so gracious and I look forward to your contribution. My words looked harsher than their intent.

                                                  As Jim Leff used to say, Chowhound doesn't have programming directors like TV networks who decide what you get to see. Each person who posts here has the power to turn this forum toward the discussions that are of greatest interest to him or her by initiating new topics where like-minded posters will join in. That's how you build community.

                                                  1. re: Melanie Wong
                                                    Fowler RE: Melanie Wong Mar 24, 2013 10:34 AM

                                                    Melanie, I in no way thought your words were harsh and really appreciate your enthusiasm and desire to spark conversation.

                                              2. re: ItalianNana
                                                HillJ RE: ItalianNana Mar 24, 2013 05:49 AM

                                                ItalianNana, good idea you had. I started a thread on cheese terminology. pls join me over there!


                                                1. re: HillJ
                                                  Veggo RE: HillJ Mar 24, 2013 06:06 AM

                                                  It's pretty cool.

                                                  1. re: HillJ
                                                    ItalianNana RE: HillJ Mar 24, 2013 08:15 AM


                                                    Thanks lady,
                                                    I've been strolling thru the first link posted on the new thread, the glossary from the Wisconsin site. Only got to the "H" thus far & I already know perhaps twice as much about cheese as I did when I woke up!

                                                    1. re: ItalianNana
                                                      HillJ RE: ItalianNana Mar 24, 2013 11:15 AM

                                                      My pleasure! The opportunity to learn more is a great motivator!

                                      2. Melanie Wong RE: Melanie Wong Mar 24, 2013 10:26 AM

                                        Just a couple of housekeeping things for the ChOTM coordinators:

                                        DaveMP requested that thread titles be in this format:

                                        Taleggio: Cheese of the Month (Mar 2013)

                                        Putting the name upfront helps with search engine optimization and makes it easier to find when scanning the boards.

                                        The post that kicks off the discussion each month should include the growing list of links to earlier months' ChOTM threads to build a quick way to get to the archive.

                                        Other than that, the other things gleaned from people's comments on what they'd like to see for the project are two cheeses a month to take into account cost and availability. Selecting one broader category of cheese would also serve this purpose. Also at one point "cheesemaestro" had expressed his preference for a bi-weekly discussion, so having two or more cheeses each month introduces the desired variety.

                                        Other thoughts for the coordinators?

                                        1 Reply
                                        1. re: Melanie Wong
                                          EmBrooks RE: Melanie Wong Mar 25, 2013 06:27 AM

                                          Thank you for putting this all in one place Melanie!

                                        2. jpr54_1 RE: Melanie Wong Mar 26, 2013 10:54 AM

                                          I would like to start looking for cheeses.
                                          When will list be posted?

                                          5 Replies
                                          1. re: jpr54_1
                                            HillJ RE: jpr54_1 Mar 26, 2013 10:59 AM

                                            Referencing Melanie Wong's recap on this thread and reminders on the other for volunteers each month we'll be looking for CH Embrooks to select and begin an April thread to get the next CHofM going.

                                            Should be fun!

                                            1. re: jpr54_1
                                              Fowler RE: jpr54_1 Mar 26, 2013 11:22 AM

                                              >>>When will list be posted?<<<

                                              Keep your eyes on the horizon watching for white smoke or black smoke. That is what I am doing and when I see white smoke I will know a decision has been made and I will check the board to see the results.

                                              1. re: jpr54_1
                                                EmBrooks RE: jpr54_1 Mar 26, 2013 02:55 PM

                                                My understanding is that they will be posted at the beginning of each month. I can go ahead and start the April thread if that is incorrect.

                                                1. re: EmBrooks
                                                  Fowler RE: EmBrooks Mar 26, 2013 03:15 PM

                                                  EmBrooks, Is there a chance you could post your cheese decisions soon so those of us that may have questions for you regarding parameters may ask them before you are taking off on vacation when you will not be available for questions, clarifications, etc?

                                                  Thanks and I am glad you are taking the lead!

                                                  1. re: EmBrooks
                                                    Melanie Wong RE: EmBrooks Mar 26, 2013 05:08 PM

                                                    Great kick-off, Em, thank you very much.

                                                2. Melanie Wong RE: Melanie Wong Jun 19, 2013 07:39 PM

                                                  Calling out to Jay F, HillJ and jlhinwa: could we please caucus for a moment?

                                                  Two months ago, HillJ asked for a replacement for August duty.

                                                  So far, no one else has volunteered. I have a couple suggestions for covering August and would like your input.

                                                  1) HillJ, could you take either July or September if Jay F or jlhinwa were willing to trade months with you?

                                                  2) If that doesn't work, jlhinwa, would you be willing to take August? Then that gives us more time to see if somebody will volunteer for September or the start of a new cycle.

                                                  18 Replies
                                                  1. re: Melanie Wong
                                                    HillJ RE: Melanie Wong Jun 19, 2013 07:45 PM

                                                    Oh I am so glad you nabbed this thread. I didn't want to leave the cheese gang hanging. I will be logged off CH July and August in favor of work in Montreal & Spain.

                                                    I would be happy to return with a commitment to cover Sept.

                                                    Jay F, jihinwa, if that helps pls confirm here.

                                                    Thanks MW.

                                                    1. re: HillJ
                                                      Melanie Wong RE: HillJ Jun 19, 2013 07:48 PM

                                                      Ok, so we need to hear from jlhinwa if you can swap your August for jlhinwa's September.

                                                      1. re: Melanie Wong
                                                        Veggo RE: Melanie Wong Jun 20, 2013 06:48 PM

                                                        Jlhinwa hasn't posted in 11 days...

                                                        1. re: Melanie Wong
                                                          HillJ RE: Melanie Wong Jun 21, 2013 07:37 AM

                                                          I'm around for another 10 days and then I'm logged off for two months. If we don't hear back on coverage July-Sept beforehand, my offer to swap stands for Sept.

                                                      2. re: Melanie Wong
                                                        jlhinwa RE: Melanie Wong Jun 22, 2013 09:19 PM

                                                        Sorry, I have been a little MIA. My mom is terminally ill and is in her last days. July is likely not to be good for me, but I would be willing to take August. That will give me a good reason to do some "research." :-) I will watch here to see what the end result is.

                                                        1. re: jlhinwa
                                                          Melanie Wong RE: jlhinwa Jun 22, 2013 09:23 PM

                                                          I'm truly sorry to hear your news.

                                                          Thank you for being flexible at this time.

                                                          So our upcoming schedule is:

                                                          July - Jay F

                                                          August - jlhinwa

                                                          September - HillJ

                                                          We're covered.

                                                          1. re: Melanie Wong
                                                            Ruth Lafler RE: Melanie Wong Jun 29, 2013 08:55 PM

                                                            Sorry to hear your news!

                                                            Apparently JayF is also unavailable, so I've been drafted.

                                                            I'll start the thread for July.

                                                            1. re: Ruth Lafler
                                                              Melanie Wong RE: Ruth Lafler Jun 29, 2013 08:58 PM

                                                              Thanks for stepping in on short notice, Ruth. You're a cheese champ!

                                                              1. re: Melanie Wong
                                                                Veggo RE: Melanie Wong Jul 2, 2013 06:45 PM

                                                                So, its a feta complete. (Sorry!)

                                                              2. re: Ruth Lafler
                                                                jpr54_1 RE: Ruth Lafler Jun 30, 2013 07:50 AM

                                                                happy u decided to step up.

                                                            2. re: jlhinwa
                                                              HillJ RE: jlhinwa Jun 22, 2013 10:03 PM

                                                              Sorry to hear your Mom isn't well,j. Thank you for checking back.

                                                              See u on the Cheese board in Sept!

                                                              1. re: HillJ
                                                                Melanie Wong RE: HillJ Sep 1, 2013 01:43 PM

                                                                Hi there, ready to start for September?

                                                                1. re: Melanie Wong
                                                                  HillJ RE: Melanie Wong Sep 1, 2013 08:14 PM

                                                                  all set!

                                                              2. re: jlhinwa
                                                                Fowler RE: jlhinwa Jun 29, 2013 10:23 PM

                                                                I cannot even imagine what you are having to go through, Julie. I am sorry to hear about this. My heart goes out to you and your family during this terrible time.

                                                                1. re: jlhinwa
                                                                  jlhinwa RE: jlhinwa Jul 27, 2013 09:42 PM

                                                                  Thank you all for your kind words. Sadly, my mom did pass away June 29. I'm relieved for her to no longer be struggling, but I miss her terribly.

                                                                  I've just about just finished up the last of the thank-you notes and other family tasks so am ready to think about cheese again!

                                                                  I have been sorely tempted to choose gjetost as the August cheese of the month in my mom's memory...it was her favorite cheese and it was served at the lunch following her funeral service.

                                                                  Don't worry, reason has prevailed over sentimentality so it will be something of more broad appeal. Gjetost, while something I enjoy greatly, is a love it or hate it thing and I find more people on the hate it side of the fence.

                                                                  I will post the August COTM thread tomorrow.

                                                                  1. re: jlhinwa
                                                                    Melanie Wong RE: jlhinwa Jul 27, 2013 11:48 PM

                                                                    I am so sorry for your loss. I greatly admire your clarity and hope that delicious cheese will be a welcome distraction at this time!

                                                                    One of the things we had bandied about is having a cheese PLATE of the month. So if you'd like to pick Gjetost as one selection, plus one or two others to round out the plate, please feel free.

                                                                    1. re: jlhinwa
                                                                      Fowler RE: jlhinwa Jul 28, 2013 08:13 AM

                                                                      Julie, I extend my sincere condolences. I think it would be great if you chose Gjetost in honor of your Mother. I have never tried it (I suspect some others here have not as well) and it would give us a chance to try something new.

                                                                      1. re: Fowler
                                                                        grayelf RE: Fowler Jul 29, 2013 09:55 AM

                                                                        So sorry about your mom, jlhinwa. May your cheese adventures continue unabated in her honour!

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