As I reported to the Guild last year, there is a lab at Harvard that is taking an unprecedented look into the microbial communities that make up the rind on aging cheese and they are finding astonishing interactions as well as residents that all help to create the local identity of our local foods. Now Dr. Rachel Dutton, a Bauer fellow at the FAS Center of Systems Biology, has piqued the interest of many gastronomists by studying the cheese rinds at The Cellers At Jasper Hill’s aging caves, and then opening up her appreciation of microbiological societies to look at other food fermentation processes like sourdough and yogurt. Her efforts have now been noticed by the New York Times Dining Pages quoting chefs that believe she is unlocking the mysteries of what makes the taste of place — what is terroir.
I’ll be going to NYC in November and will be attending a class at Artisinal Cheese.
From their website:
Artisanal has revolutionized cheese appreciation in the United States by making the world’s finest cheeses available nationwide as never before. What sets Artisanal Premium Cheese apart is the art of affinage – an ancient practice by which our passionate cheese professionals complete the cheese maker’s labor of love by patiently nurturing each of the 200 cheeses we offer to optimal ripeness and peak flavor. With a dedicated staff of affineurs, and state-of-the-art aging caves, Artisanal alone provides top quality cheese for fine-dining restaurants, specialty gourmet stores, and to directly to consumers.
Would Guild members be interested in attending a class over the winter? I can make initial contact and obtain additional information while I’m there.
Looks like nice classes scheduled
Troy cheesemaker Bob Perol, of Diversity Farm, showed off his cheese cave to the Bangor Daily News, and you can read about in their March 27 article here.