Who Cut the Cheese?

Cheese is gross.  No really, it’s disgusting.  It’s essentially old, moldy milk.  When you think about it – it’s nasty.  But in reality – it’s fucking DELICIOUS.  I mean, it’s just so WONDERFUL.

So many flavors, so many textures, so many smells.  How many other times do you smell feet that ripe and think “pass me a cracker!”

It’s delicious by itself, it’s delicious on a cracker, in a burrito, on a taco, sprinkled (heavily!) on your meatballs, baked, toasted and burnt.  Cheese doesn’t have an ego – it can be the star of the show in a perfect grilled cheese or it can be a loyal backup dancer on your burger and it’s always happy to share equal billing with eggs or turkey or ham.

And, it’s pretty much loved worldwide.

My favorite cheese experiences…

#1 Maui, Hawaii
@surfinggoatdairy was the absolute highlight of my trip to Maui.  I was traveling alone and I signed up for the “Grand Dairy Tour” – you milk goats, you learn about all the skills and processes that go into making cheese, and you get to sample so much cheese.  They do things with goat cheese that just simply make your mouth happy! If you are in Maui… make a point to visit! And they’ll even ship to you!! Oh yeah, and did I mention the goat cheese truffles!  

#2 Kangaroo Island, Australia
It was the summer of 1999 (before the world ended at Y2K) and I did the 2-day Kangaroo Island Tour with a couple classmates from my study abroad program.  The first day was centered on the wildlife, especially the penguins (penguins UP CLOSE!!!). The second day was a “tastes of Kangaroo island” focus – there was a lobster farm and another local farm up first, but then we got to sheep milk dairy.  And that’s where I met the most wonderful cheese I’ve ever eaten. It was this cheese that when you dropped a ball of it into a hot pan, it cooked itself in its own oils and turned into these little patties. Move over Mozzarella Sticks, I’ve got a new love.  And I’m super, super sad that my 20-year-old traveller didn’t think to remember the name of it. But hot damn, I’ll never forget that cheese.

#3 Cabarete, Dominican Republic
We were staying at the Areca Hotel in Cabarete.  Friends of friends referred us to this delightful apartment style hotel set up feet from the beach and we had the extreme good fortune of being welcomed into Cabarete by one of its legendary citizens.  She had us over for breakfast – a traditional Dominican Breakfast – which consists of mangu, cebollas, salchichón, huevo frito, queso frito, and aguacate. You’ll be full for days – look it up, its possibly the best breakfast ever.  Queso Frito – seriously, I’m going back, just for more of that cheese. It was heavenly.

The moral of this blog… EAT THE CHEESE!  EAT ALL THE CHEESES!

#Cheese #australia #maul #dominicanrpublic #cabarete #cabareteDR  #kangarooisland #goatcheese #sheepcheese #sheepsmilkcheese #chocolate #truffles #eatthecheese

Learn more:

Surfing Goat Dairy

Kangaroo Island – It was 20 years ago, and I don’t remember exactly which tour we did, so I’ll leave you in the trusted hands of TripAdvisor 

Hotel Areca

And Now I Love Coffee

And Now I Love Coffee

I grew up with Scottish parents who drank tea 12 times a day.  My mom had a small jar of Sanka instant coffee on hand just in case company preferred a coffee to tea.  When caffeine was necessary to get through life in high school, Pepsi was my choice.  It wasn’t until college that I really started to drink coffee.

I went to college in the 90’s, so it was the start of the indy coffeeshop craze and introduction of espresso and cappuccino to most of us.  Thanks to Seattle and grunge rock, drinking coffee was cool again.  And not just any coffee – fancy coffee.  Espresso, cappuccinos and lattes.  I remember the first time I heard of a latte, I thought “What’s a latte?”

And Now I Love Coffee
Coffee with Friends at Urth Cafe in Beverly Hills

Then I worked as a barista for several years of my college career and I make a mean foam.  My foam brought all the boys to the yard.  Seriously, do you know how hard it is to find someone who makes good foam?  Very, very hard to find.

This is where I learned the difference between a latte and a cappuccino.  I have since realized half the baristas I’ve encountered don’t know the difference between a latte and a cappuccino.  And if they do, they don’t care to make it correctly.  The milk to foam ratio is never correct.

It was working there that I started to love coffee.  When a French guy tells you you make good espresso, you pay attention.  If I wasn’t good at anything else, I was good at making coffee.  But, much like anything else I eat and drink, I have to have my coffee in moderation.  I typically only have one cup in the morning.

I like a dark roast and I’ve managed the perfect balance of water to coffee.  For one cup.  If I need to make more, it gets a little sketchy and becomes an experiment in weak vs. strong.  I have my coffee with milk and sugar.

Even if I didn’t love coffee, I love the ritual of having coffee each morning.  It’s honestly one of my favorite times of the day.  I like to take my time drinking my coffee, and working from home gives me that luxury.  However, now I have a bit of a commute taking my daughter to school, so sometimes I have to drink my coffee in the car.

And you know what I love more than drinking coffee?  Drinking coffee with a friend.  Or multiple friends; even better.  If I can have my coffee with my sisters, or a friend, my heart is full and my cup is empty.



Can I get an IV? My love affair with coffee

Dearest Coffee –

Delicious child of ground beans and hot water.  The nectar of the gods. Proof that the Universe loves us. Coffee is wonderful.  

Coffee how I love thee!

Coffee makes me human. Coffee picks me up and doesn’t slam me right back down (I’m looking at you Pixie Stix!).

Coffee is a ritual, it’s a mating dance, it’s a warm, cozy hug first thing in the morning.  There is something truly magical about that first cup of coffee in the am.

Recently, the doctor informed me that I had to make some serious changes to my eating habits – and identified a few of the most likely triggers for the issue I was having – coffee and spicy foods. Why don’t you just take away breathing doc?  Begrudgingly, I gave up coffee (as a test), let’s not give up everything delicious and wonderful in life all at once. Sriracha stays.

  And, I’ll admit it did help (quite a bit actually).  But I refuse to breakup with coffee altogether. We are exploring seeing other people, but we still hook up occasionally.   Coffee and I had an intense relationship, in the mornings, I’d grind and hit brew before hopping in the shower, then while I’m tooting around getting ready I’d have one – maybe two cups.  Then for the drive, the rest of the pot went into my coffee bottle. That’s right – bottle. That was usually gone before I got to my destination. And since I had to be out of the house and wearing pants, like an adult,  I’d usually have one more cup in the office in the morning. If it was a really bad sleep night, then I’d have one in the afternoon as well. Coffee and I were addicted to each other.

It was a clean break at first, switched teams right over to Green Tea and didn’t look back.  But then I had my first work event post-breakup – 10 days in New York. I knew I was going to cave, I just thought it would be mid-event hotel coffee.  Instead, I made it through the event, but on the morning after, as we explored the city, as everyone else was getting their morning coffee, I broke down.  Iced coffee. After six weeks without coffee, I finally felt like a human again. What a glorious morning.

So, while things are getting pretty serious with Tea, she’s aware that coffee will always be my first love and that I’m never giving him up.  Tea is pretty respectful, she’ll step aside and let coffee do his thing… and let me tell you, he does his thing so much better, now that he’s a special treat.

Coffee I <3 Thee