Monday, March 26, 2007

Sir Francis Drake from Cowgirl Creamery

We went to a lovely dinner at Ms. Five-and-a-Half and Mr. Thirteen's house on Sunday. I had offered to reprise our dessert/cheese course of Tarte Tatin paired with Cheddar and a triple creme.

We needed to get some cheese though and at 5:45 pm, fifteen minutes before they closed on Saturday night, we raced over to Cowgirl Creamery in the Embarcadero's Ferry Building, figuring this would be an easy trip -- we were being focussed after all: two cheeses, we knew which kinds.

Never shop when you're hungry.

We returned home with all that you see above (Except the Linne Calado "Problem Child" wine-- that just somehow snuck into the picture.) We nailed down the cheddar (Keen's from Neal's Yard), and the triple creme (Mt. Tam-- one of my faves) but I kept spotting new things.

"What's the Serenita?"

Our obliging counter person shaved off some samples for us -- but almost before she could finish, I was dancing around waving at Eric with a Cowgirl Creamery "Sir Francis Drake" in my hand. Wordlessly, maniacally, I pointed at it, and it joined out stash in the basket. But then a flash of brick red caught my eye. Fra'Mani salamettos! And chorizo! Into the basket!

Never shop when you're hungry.

The Sir Francis Drake only comes out when "the bacteria is good," says our cheesepusher. Oh it's good. Whenever we spot it, we HAVE to buy a round.

"Smells like wet seashells and dirty feet," I observe with a sigh as we unwrap it. But don't let that put you off. I like to think of it as a cheese not unlike the man himself -- a salty old seafarer that nevertheless hasn't quite lost the refinements of the Old World. It tastes distinctly of briny, sandy air and the Pacific Ocean. For real -- I'm not kidding!

Kitty agrees.

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