Monday, June 09, 2008

The Mother of All Cheese Trips

Summer is nearly upon us, and our thoughts are turning Vermont-ward. Why, you may ask? Well for one (rather obvious) thing, there's a lot of good cheese to be had there. And 'tis the season for cheesin', as summer pasture produces some of the best milk around...

But don't take our word for it, Saxelby Cheesemongers wants you to experience it for yourself! With our next Day A-Whey, you could help make some of that most tasty and delectable cheese with your very own hands. Yes it's true, this June we're taking a whole dang weekend a-whey to Consider Bardwell Farm, and we want you to be a part of it!

Here's all the cheesy details in a nutshell... we'll depart on Friday the 20th of June, and stay the weekend at the historic Dorset Inn. We'll romp and frolick around the farm on Saturday and Sunday, making cheese, bonding with the goats, and helping out in the cheese caves. Saturday night we'll be treated to a delicious local harvest dinner featuring a cheese tasting with Peter Dixon, cheese maker/dairy guru at Consider Bardwell. Finally, we'll (begrudgingly) return to the city the evening of Sunday, June 22nd.

So, for those of you who are truly cheese obsessed, read on...

The trip will depart from Saxelby Cheesemongers mid-afternoon on Friday June 20th. We'll drive up to Vermont, and land at the historic Dorset Inn in time for dinner and a little walk around town.

Saturday morning, we'll drive over to Consider Bardwell Farm, a 300-acre parcel that just happens to be the site of the first cheese making cooperative in the great Green State. Peter Dixon, resident fromager extraordinaire, will teach a hands-on cheese making workshop, showing us how farmstead goat and cows' milk cheese is crafted. We'll get our hands in the cheese vat, and witness the magical alchemy of cheese making from goats in the milking parlor to curds and whey, to a freshly pressed wheel of cheese!

Following the workshop, Angela Miller, owner of Consider Bardwell Farm, will
serve up a picnic lunch and farm tour, detailing the history of the land and the cheese making tradition there. Ms. Miller will also explain how she (a literary agent from NYC) and her husband Russell (an architect) transformed Consider Bardwell from a defunct dairy to a working, cheese-producing farm.

Saturday evening, after a full day of farming we'll retire to the Dorset Inn for a four-course dinner featuring a cornucopia of Vermont-grown produce, meats, and cheeses. A member of the Vermont Fresh Network, the Dorset Inn has been supporting local farms since the 1980's. For the cheese course, Peter Dixon will lead a guided tasting, showcasing Consider Bardwell's wonderful array of goat and cows' milk cheeses. To say that Mr. Dixon knows his stuff would be an understatement... he's spent the better part of his life making cheese in locales near and far, and crafts some of the best fermented food these mongers have ever tasted.

Come Sunday we'll drive back out to the farm for the final stages of the cheese making process, and have an opportunity to observe and/or participate in the myraid of events that happen in the day to day operation of the farm. In late June, there will be no shortage of activity at Consider Bardwell: the kid goats will be getting into plenty of mischeif, the morning and afternoon milking can be observed, and the mysteries of the cheese aging process will be illuminated as we help with the duties associated with the art of affinage: turning, washing, and caring for the cheese in Consider Bardwell's cave.

After a little picnic lunch, we'll get back on the road, and will arrive back in Manhattan by Sunday evening.

And who knows? After all this farming and cheese-making, you may just be tempted to start your own! Or maybe that's just our own wishful thinking...

Ticket Information:

Tickets are $750 for a double (shared) room and $900 for a single room.

The cost of the ticket includes transportation, two nights at the Dorset Inn, four-course dinner on Saturday night, catered breakfast and picnic lunch on Saturday and Sunday, as well as the cheese making workshop and farm tour. Pariticipants will be responsible dinner in Dorset on Friday evening.

Saxelby Cheesemongers will make special arrangements at a discounted price for guests wishing to provide their own transportation.

Space is extremely limited. Reservations will be accepted on a first come, first serve basis. To make a reservation, please call Saxelby Cheesemongers at 212-228-8204.

For further information, please visit:

New Cheese on the Block

This Week at Saxelby Cheesemongers
It's a hot time in the city. And when the mercury goes up this high, who feels like cooking? A hot, sticky day like today is perfect time to grab a little morsel of cheese, a crusty loaf of bread and a bottle of crisp summer wine. Add a little salad to the mix, and voila! Dinner is served. Saxelby Cheesemongers has some new summer arrivals to whet your appetite:

Consider Bardwell Farm (pasteurized goats' milk. West Pawlet, VT)

Nothing says summer like a fresh little button of goats' milk cheese, rife with tart and tangy acidity. Mettowee is one of Consider Bardwell Farm's signature cheeses, and takes its name from the lush river valley where the farm is located. The smooth and silky paste is the perfect thing to dollop atop a green salad, or to smear on toast with olive oil and herbs or your favorite fruit or preserves. If you're really feeling saucy, have a bit of Mettowee with strawberries and champagne... you won't be dissappointed!

Boucher Blue
Green Mountain Cheese Company (raw cows' milk. Highgate Center, VT)

A sweet and creamy blue that calls to mind the famous French Fourme d'Ambert. The interior of the cheese is absolutely riddled with deep green and blue fissures that taste of white pepper, wet straw, and vanilla. The finish is long and quite spicy, leaving a zinger of a blue streak on your palate.

Seal Cove Tomme
Seal Cove Farm (pasteurized goats' milk. Lamoine, ME)

We could eat a stack of these Tommes quicker than we could scarf a box of Girl Scout cookies! Such is the mysterious power of this tiny, but tasty cheese. A small, dry disc of rather terse and rigid curd with an unexpected kick of salty, sweaty, citrus fruit flavor. Cheese maker Barbara Brooks learned to make this cheese while traveling in Provence, where these little tommes proliferate. Go on, grab a whole handful, who said you can't eat goat cheese like cookies?

*You could have a hand in making some Mettowee should you choose to hop on our cheese-obsessed caravan to Consider Bardwell Farm the weekend of June 20th to the 22nd! There are still two spots left... so sign up for your Day A-Whey today. Call 212-228-8204 or check out for more information

Monday, June 02, 2008

Oops! A Correction...

So, I goofed a bit with my post about this Friday's party at the Yard... I wrote that the party ends at 8:00 pm which is a positively false statement. The live music will be ending around then, but the party will still be going strong! Kelly Geary, chef extraordinaire and sometime dj will be inviting friends in to keep the tunes cranking and might even step in for a stint herself. We'll basically be up eating mac and cheese till the cows come home.

So don't worry if you can't make it early. There'll be plenty of music for all!

See details in the previous entry to check out tickets online...

What Summer Hours Were Made For

This Week at Saxelby Cheesemongers

Being a cheesemonger, I wouldn't know from experience, but a little bird once told me that come June many folks are given the magnanimous gift of summer hours, thereby kick-starting the weekend and getting everyone out into the Friday afternoon sun. Well, supposing this is true, Saxelby Cheesemongers has a really good excuse for you to get out of the office early this Friday... a Brooklyn backyard cookout, complete with live music, homemade mac and cheese, apple pie, and tasty beverages culled from the borough's best.

Even if you don't have summer hours, you should probably find a way to play hooky! It'll be worth it... we promise.

Brooklyn Mac and Cheese Cookout and General Hootenanny
This Friday, June 6th
4:00 to 8:00 pm
The Yard (388-400 Carroll St. between Bond and Nevins St.)
F/G train to Carroll St. or N/R to Union St.

Tickets $25

for more info, visit:

Come one, come all to a dinner party like you've never seen before! We'll be cooking up a storm and dancing our shoes off at the Yard, Brooklyn's only backyard barbeque set on the shores of the Gowanus Canal. The Yard has invited Saxelby Cheesemongers and Kelly Geary of Sweet Deliverance NYC to bake up a serious batch of mac and cheese and serve it up alongside sautéed early summer greens and some of Brooklyn's most delectable beverages, including Apollo wheat beer from Sixpoints Craft Ales and bourbon from the borough's resident expert, LeNell Smothers. And the good eating doesn't stop there... there's gooey apple pie garnished with a hearty slice of cheddar for dessert. It don't get much cheesier than that.

While everybody's busy filling their bellies, we'll work on filling your ears up too, rolling out the red carpet (not to mention the dance floor) for the Woes, a band whose sound hopscotches around bluegrass, old-time, and New Orleans jazz. If you haven't heard them, to say that you are in for a treat would be an understatement. And if you have, well, you know to bring your dancing shoes. Here's to a fun and raucous summer's eve... hope to see you at the Yard!

What's For Dinner? The Rise of Food Literacy
Tuesday June 3rd
6:00 pm
Wollman Hall, Eugene Lang Building
65 West 11th Street, 5th floor (enter at 66 West 12th Street)

In other news, tomorrow evening The New School will host a panel discussion about the state of food literacy. Panelists will be Anne Saxelby, chef Michael Anthony of the Gramercy Tavern, and Brian Halweil of Edible Manhattan. Drop by for some cheese and some chatter!

Tickets $8

for more info, visit:

And last but not least! There are only 2 spots left on our Day A-Whey Weekend Trip to Consider Bardwell Farm. For anyone who's been on the fence, now's the time! For more information or to reserve your spot, call 212-228-8204.