Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Cheese Shopping

Good news for us cheeseaholics -- more and more retail stores are carrying artisan and specialty cheeses and shipping for the holidays. So even if you live in a cheese-starved part of the country, fear not, there are good cheesemongers out there that will ship to you. Here are three of my favorites:

1. Anne Saxelby, Saxelby Cheese, New York. Anne writes a weekly blog about her cheese adventures and always cracks me up. Here's her opening for today's entry:

What's small and cardboard and smells like a sock? That's absolutely right! A holiday box' o cheese from Saxelby Cheesemongers! This holiday season, the best of America's farmstead cheeses are just a hop, skip, and a click away! We apologize to the FedEx guys in advance for stinking up their trucks...

I mean, how can you NOT want to buy cheese from this lady? Awesome.

2. Fromagination on the Capital Square in Madison -- in addition to being a full-service cheese shop carrying more than 60 Wisconsin artisan cheeses that are cut-to-order, Fromagination is also hosting holiday planning/buying parties on Dec. 4 and Dec. 11. Staff will help you design custom-made gift baskets for everyone on your list, plus you get a discount.

If you don't live in Madison, fear not - Fromagination also ships. It's a great shop to find artisan cheeses made in Wisconsin that you won't find anywhere else.

3. Kroger and Murray's Cheese: this just hit my inbox yesterday -- apparently these two companies have launched a partnership and are opening the first of three Murray's Cheese departments in the Cincinnati-area Kroger Supermarkets.

The Murray's Cheese department at the Kenwood Towne Place Kroger in Cincinnati will look much like the Murray's Cheese flagship store in New York City's Greenwich Village and will carry more than 500 items, including many of the same cheeses, crackers, dried fruits, and olives as the Bleecker Street original. This Murray's Cheese department--as well as those debuting in the coming weeks at the existing Hyde Park and Liberty Township Krogers in Cincinnati--will be staffed by Kroger employees who have received rigorous cheese service training.

The press release says Murray's employees have created an encyclopedic 300-page cheese service guide exclusively for the partnership and spent a month in Cincinnati further educating their Kroger counterparts. Now, the Kroger employees manning these Murray's Cheese departments will be able to provide the same level of service as Murray's employees in New York City.

Too cool. Let's hope Murray's decides to open a satellite shop in a Kroger's near you! Happy holiday cheese shopping!

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