Back to School

11 09 2007

Raw Milk
After a month-plus-long hiatus (I missed the place), I was back tonight at Tria Fermentation School for a class on cheese. The session was led by Phil Falsone, the executive chef and culinary educator for Hendricks Farms and Dairy—a local farm that’s making a name for its artisanal cheeses. Falsone taught a class at Tria in the spring, and I really enjoyed it, so I made sure to book a spot in tonight’s class, “Baby, I Like It Raw.” (Gosh, blush city.)

As the name of the class suggests, the topic was raw milk cheeses. We tasted seven different raw milk cheeses from Hendricks. My favorites were Hendricks’s Cow Pie, its take on a Camembert, all runny and delicious; its Cheddar Blue, which struck me tonight as more blue-y than before; and its Dirty Laundry, an amazingly aggressive blue cheese that’s flavored, somehow or other, with cherries. Falsone also let us taste from the first wheel of Hendricks’s new Preserve cheese, which, to my palate, had all the best qualities of the farm’s Colby cheese in a kind of super-concentrated fashion.

Tria served some delicious beverages tonight. There was a Farnum Hill extra-dry cider and Makana Meadery’s ¡Qhilika African Herbal Blossom Mead, which I’ve blogged about several times now. Two delicious beers were on hand, too—Southampton’s Saison, which I blogged about here, and Brouwerij Sint-Pieters’s Zinnebir. I believe this was my first tasting of the Zinnebir, and I was absolutely taken with its citrus-y and yeast-y funkiness. I definitely want to get my hands on some more Zinnebir.

It was good to be back at Tria’s school. Falsone leads a good class. In the spring, I described him as “100% cute and adorable.” That’s high praise for me, but it probably understates his charm, really. Of course, I could just be flattered that he remembered me. I know, though, that that’s probably because I made a fool of myself last time—memorably so?—over the Cow Pie.

But that Cow Pie is seriously delicious stuff.

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