Posts tagged ‘cheese’

February 25, 2012

Salt Tasting Room

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You all know I am beer obsessed; now I am red wine obsessed.  Maybe I am just alcohol obsessed?  Last fall a dear friend introduced me to the proper way to drink red and it has been nothing but love after that.  The proper way is slightly chilled.   Now I am as particular about my red as I am about my beer.  A monster has been created.

While in Vancouver, the husband and I had a really lovely wine experience.  Yelp directed us to Salt Tasting Room for a late evening snack.  They focus on amazing cheese, cured meats, condiments, and of course wine.  I originally selected it because they also pair beer with the aforementioned, but beer wasn’t even a consideration after a quick peek at the wine list.   Now don’t get me wrong.  I still didn’t have a clue what to order.  The waiter was pretty fantastic and selected all of our pairings for us after we told him a few things about our palette preferences.

The space was warm, intimate, but still lively, and incredibly welcoming.  You know that warm and relaxed feeling you get on in the inside when you are about half way through a glass?  It was like all of your senses experienced that as soon as you walked in the door.

September 28, 2011

Rejected with a Side of Cheese

I got rejected last week.  Big time.  Rejected with a side of cheese.  The article below was written for another publication, but it was sent back to me with heavy edits.  Apparently my style wasn’t quite what they were looking for.  I even used my internal filter!  Who would have thought referencing fart jokes was inappropriate? Their loss is TPJ’s gain!  Enjoy.

During summer of 2011, I made one of the most unimaginable commitments.  I went Paleo. i.e., I eat like a caveman.  And yes, it is much harder than you think.  I am not here to talk about hunting and gathering though.  I’m here to talk about cheese.  I get to cheat one day a week and the majority of my day is focused around that lovely dairy product.  Cheese deserves its own day of worship.  Every Saturday becomes my homage to fromage.

Goat, Gouda, Gruyere…they all make my mouth water and my tummy rumble.  Think about it; cheese is the foundation of every good dinner you have ever attended.  It kicks it off with appetizers and takes you right through the main course.  If you have a respectable host, he or she found a way to work it into dessert too.  Have you had a hard Parmesan with fresh strawberries and a balsamic drizzle?  Oh. My. Goodness.  You haven’t lived until you have had this.

You also make friends with cheese; just don’t cut it.  Just kidding.  Cheese people are people you want to be around!  Their good taste naturally carries over to other food items.  Wine, olives, and don’t forget prosciutto!  Hang around the deli counter next time and you might find yourself a new foodie pal.  Or a date.

What cheese is my favorite?  That is like asking a mother which of her children is her favorite.  We all know she has a favorite but she has trouble admitting the cold, hard facts.  So for now I will tell you that I love them all equally.  But I did highlight a few of my more-favorite types of cheese below.

This is a must on the list because I have been to the region of Italy where it was created.  It has a delicious nutty flavor and can have a sharp taste depending on its age.  I read somewhere that it has tremendous nutritional value and is a requirement for a healthy diet.  I’ll go with that!

Have you had this on a burger?  Stop reading this now and go get a juicy burger with a thick slice of camembert on top.  I will guarantee that you will never become vegetarian after tasting this.  It is a mild cheese with the perfect balance of butter and salt.  Take another bite and you will start to notice the garlic and mushroom flavor.

It comes in all different outfits.  It is most recognizable in the red wax ensemble.  Gouda’s flavors also range from mellow and caramel to smoky and musky.  There is a Gouda for each of your moods.

And last but not least…

This one has a bit of an identity crisis.  Sometimes it is even called chevre.  It ranges from firm in texture to soft.  The flavor is highly influenced by what the goat eats, which tends to be more plants, thus making a more distinctive taste.  This one also has fewer calories than other cheese and is easier to digest than cheese from cow’s milk.  Winner, winner!

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