Sicily: A Cheese Lover’s Itinerary

By now, you know that I am smitten with cheese travel. Of all the places I’ve visited, Sicily ranks #1 in my mind for having the most cheese-enthused citizens. (Sorry, Vermont.) The Sicilians I met during my two week cheese trek in June didn’t just love waxing poetic about their neighbor’s ricotta, they wanted to […]

Pairings: Alpine Cheese and An Old Fashioned

One of my favorite drinks in The New Cocktail Hour — the recent book I wrote with my brother André — has to be the Old Fashioned. Its flavor profile is aromatic, earthy, and sweet-spicy, thanks to a mix of whiskey or brandy, bitters, sugar, and orange peel. That, friends, is a true Old Fashioned, the first cocktail […]

How to Talk to a Cheesemonger

Every week, people tell me that they are too intimidated to shop at cheese counters. Because they feel unschooled in the world of dairy, they buy shrink-wrapped wedges from the cold case, carefully avoiding the eyes of the cheesemonger. As one man told me recently, “It’s like dealing with a sommelier. I feel so inadequate!” […]

Cheese Board Basics

Readers often email for tips on putting together a cheese board. Here are a few suggestions: Pick a theme. When in doubt, choose a variety of cheeses from different milks – cow, sheep, goat, and if you can find it: water buffalo. You can also put together a cheese board by country (French, Italian, or […]

On Keeping A Cheese Notebook

“It all comes back,” writes Joan Didion in her famous essay on the subject of writer’s notebooks. It’s true. It does all come back. For almost three years now, I have recorded every nibble, every recommendation overheard at the cheese counter, along with lists of cheeses to try. Bad Axe. Gamonedo. (I have yet to find either.) But […]