Phew, what a day! Happily, it began in part with an encouraging e-mail from Ms. Tami Parr, author of the fantastic website Pacific Northwest Cheese Project. I like those kinds of e-mails. I have to admit, it is a bit scary to venture off onto this path of being a cheesemonger; there is so much to learn, and quite a bit of uncertainty, so I’ve been asking for advice on the transition left and right. I’m all ears to all constructive input, so feel free, you too, to leave a note.
After that, it seems the day didn’t go quite as well as I hoped. Today was such a busy day; I spent more time as a cook than as a cheesemonger. First, I tried out my super pomegranate/grapefruit compote. Unfortunately, I don’t think it turned out well at all, even after letting it sit and marinate in the honey/wine/sherry syrup for two hours. I don’t think I would want to serve it in its current state, at least not right now. I’ll try it tomorrow to see if it’s any
better . . . . Next, came apricot chutney. Happily, that turned out well. We just ran out at the restaurant, and desperately needed a new batch.
I found some things to improve on as well, mainly presentation of various things–from samples for clients to our appetizer plates to cheese plates. I am always working on that, just like I am always working on improving my knife skills to cut those enormous wheels of cheese cleanly. For someone who has always paid close attention to the appearance of things, I sure do have plenty to perfect here. It will all come eventually–that’s what I have to keep reminding myself.
It is always difficult to clearly plan a schedule for the day. People come in at all times, and ask for anything from some cheese samples, information about the store/restaurant, wine, cheese plates . . . you just never can tell. The result is that sometimes I just can’t finish everything that people ask. I wish I could! Maybe that too will come with some more time.
Luckily, the day ended with an enormous cheese delivery. Here’s a sampling (Carlos did the styling!):
I don’t remember the names of all of them, but I did spy some Bermuda Triangle cheeses from Cypress Grove, a Spanish sheep’s milk cheese coated in rosemary, and a large drum of Beecher’s Flagship Reserve Cheddar.