November 26, 2000 |
Blue cheese is something one either adores or despises. Naturally, I adore it. As a preteen, I was invited along with my parents to visit friends. In the middle of their coffee table was a wheel of Stilton with crackers. All afternoon I kept going back for more of this cheese with its strange but fascinating taste and fabulous nutty aftertaste. Ever since then, I've developed regular cravings for the bold, even funky taste and super-creamy texture of the great blues. Blue cheeses owe their flavor and blue-green streaking to a blue mold.
October 9, 2008
There is a reason that Oregon's Rogue Creamery last year became the first American cheesemaker to export raw-milk cheese to England. Its various blues are stunningly good, with an elusive Roquefort-like mix of luscious creaminess and vividly veined tang that few Americans have achieved. (Rogue's use of raw cow's milk, as opposed to Roquefort's traditional sheep's milk, is one important distinction.) But Rogue's products are pricey, about $30 a pound. So DiBruno Bros.' current discount on Rogue's Crater Lake blue ($22.
October 12, 1986 |
The arrival of autumn in earnest cannot but provoke mixed feelings in any lover of fine food. On the one hand - rats, there go the delights of the summer garden, things like tender snap beans and delicate squash, sweet corn and berries, all the local fruits and vegetables that cannot be matched by exotic imports, no matter how speedily delivered. On the other hand - hooray, here come Belgian endive and the possibility of roast duck; fresh cider; pears and their great partner, Stilton cheese.
August 28, 1994 |
One great way the Greeks use their beloved feta cheese is to crumble it over salads, either of leafy greens or of diced tomatoes and cucumbers. The rich, tangy, pungent flavor of the cheese is an ideal complement to cool greens and to refreshing vegetables like cucumbers. Adding this tasty cheese is also a quick, easy way to turn a simple salad into a festive dish. The French use a similar technique with Roquefort and goat cheese. These crumbly cheeses are also good in potato and pasta salads.
October 25, 1991 |
Mon Dieu! Cafe Cafe serves food until midnight on weeknights! I actually had a meal there after 10 p.m., and no one ran a vacuum cleaner under my feet. No one came around to collect the salt and pepper shakers; no one stacked chairs on the tables around me; no one leaned out of the kitchen and gave me a dirty look. All of that has happened to me in various downtown establishments when I have dared to dine after 10 p.m. Cafe Cafe is for night owls, theatergoers, singles, couples, tardy lunchers and early-bird dinnergoers.
March 6, 2014 |
Robyn Hitchcock may just be the last of the great English eccentrics. Like Kevin Ayers, Roy Harper, Robert Wyatt, and his hero, Pink Floyd fire-starter Syd Barrett, Hitchcock has forever crafted a sound - alone or with his first notable ensemble, the Soft Boys - whimsically and surrealistically literate with melodies steeped in folk traditionalism, psychedelia, and art-pop. His lyrics, sung in a gloriously nasal English accent reminiscent of a young Lennon or Bowie, express pent-up ire, frustration, mirth, and joy, while dazzling the listener/reader with their bold, odd intelligence and black humor.
July 19, 1987 |
When it comes to romantic dining, the Country House at Kimberton is hard to beat. The building, parts of which date to 1796, occupies an idyllic site just west of Phoenixville, a bucolic tract split by a tiny unnamed creek that powers a working water wheel. The Colonial interior reflects the building's long history - original, pegged hardwood floor boards beneath beautiful Oriental carpets, exposed ceiling beams, built-in cupboards flanking fireplaces with mantels burgeoning with giant baskets of dried flowers, and deeply recessed windows filled with hanging ferns and a Victorian lamp with green glass globe.
January 24, 1988 |
The Highland Inn has been a fixture on the Abington restaurant scene for nearly 20 years. Unfortunately, it shows. The restaurant seems stuck with its original format: The menu, festooned with daily specials clipped to the edges, is a throwback to the days when fried seafood and simply prepared dishes were considered gourmet cuisine. The decor, too, seems badly in need of refurbishing. The only good news is that prices are modest, a justifiable situation considering the dismal setting.
October 25, 2007
When it comes to creating a cheese plate, simplicity rules, said Chef Jenny Harris of Tria cafe in Center City. "I strongly recommend serving cheese with the freshest baguette you can find," she said. "Many crackers have strong flavors that would clash with or detract from these top-of-the-line artisan cheeses. " The accompaniment should accentuate the cheese's flavor or contrast it, but not mask it, she continued. "If you choose to serve foods with cheeses, keep it simple. The cheese is the star of the show.
October 10, 2014 |
There are more than 100 cheese-makers in the province of Québec, the most of any in Canada, and they are producing some of the most exciting artisan cheeses in the New World, from washed-rind stinkers to creamy blues. That comes as no surprise, given the province's cheese-loving French DNA. Unfortunately, few of the best - especially those made from raw milk - are widely available in the States. That just means you'll have to visit some of the fine cheesemongers of Québec City.