This Week at Saxelby Cheesemongers: 
There’s No Place Like Home, 
or All the World Loves a Market

First off, sorry cheese lovers for the lack
 of communication over these past few weeks. 
I was out of town, playing serious 
hooky and eating as much Costa Rican
 cheese as I could get my paws on. The mecca 
to conduct this glorious (and a bit gluttonous) 
sampling was none other than San Jose’s historic 
central market, a sturdy, amiable, and decidedly 
simple edifice nestled into the heart of town.
mercado main entranceWalking into the cramped, bustling corridors of this 1880’s market gave me pause because for many years, customers entering the Essex Market for the first time, though they hail from destinations across the globe all have the same comment: ‘This market reminds me of home.’ There is some kind of universal sensibility that allows people to recognize and immediately identify with a public market. They wander the aisles, their eyes taking in the myriad piles of fruits and vegetables, ogling tiers of baked goods, smelling bunches of dried herbs hanging from hooks, and sizing up slabs of meat.
In many ways, San Jose’s Central Market is 
very much like Essex: a simple square of a 
building, low to the ground, stalls divided from 
one another by steel beams, with high ceilings 
and skylights of glass enmeshed with shatterproof 
wire to let the daylight seep through. However,
 if the Essex Market boasts 30 stalls, San Jose’s 
has 300. The place is absolutely labyrinthine, 
or perhaps more appropriately, onion-esque, 
 with a core of stalls at the center extending 
outward towards the edges of the building 
in hectic concentric layers. 
The sensation of wandering this market is one 
of true wonder (and a bit of vertigo) as you try 
to make your way around, and is even more baffling 
when trying to find your way back to a particular stall. 
Hansel and Gretel’s breadcrumbed and backward 
GPS system would have definitely come in handy 
more than a handful of times as I tried to 
retrace my steps back to some especially
 lovely vendors. 
There was the old gentleman with all manner 
of knives… I was in search of one small enough
 to make a picnic with, but his shop was a nod 
to the overwhelming nature of the rainforest, 
agriculture, and the sprawl of the city over 
the years. He sold everything from pocket 
knives to full on machetes. Coils of lasso with 
varying thicknesses and colors adorned the
 walls from floor to ceiling. 
Then there was the helados shop, a business 
started in 1901 and thriving till the present day 
with just one perfectly sweet and refreshing flavor 
of sorbet: vanilla mixed with cinnamon. Young boys 
in blue caps and aprons served a clamoring clientele
 that flanked the stall’s three outward facing 
countertops, dutifully scooping mounds of the 
 ochre-colored confection as quickly as it 
was gobbled up. 
The cheese shops were simple affairs, consisting
 of refrigerated display cases filled with trays of
 locally made fresh cheese. The most popular was 
a cheese called Turrialba named after a nearby town. 
Soft and queso fresco-like, the cheese was sold in three
 stages of ripeness: ‘tierno’ meaning soft and fresh,
 semi-curado, and curado. Then there was the  
queso palmita: a mozzarella-like ball of cheese named 
for its likeness to heart of palm.When cut open, 
circular layers of cheese surround one another 
concealing a tart and lemony core of fresh curd.
sodaBut the most impressive sights 
of all were the sodas, diminutive 
mom and pop lunch counters 
that served quick, hearty, and 
simple meals to marketgoers.
 The one that we stopped at
 made me blush for ever calling 
my own shop small. It was no 
more that 6 feet by 6 feet, 
and contained three workers,
 a cutting board station, a sink, 
and a small flat-top grill where 
my lunch of tortillas and salchichon
 with shredded lettuce and crema
 was prepared. We cozied up next to our neighbor on two 
of their three stools and savored our delicious lunch. 
The kicker came when the woman washing the vegetables 
loaded a bus tub of dirty dishes onto what appeared to be 
a low-hanging shelf, only to watch it be hauled up via pulley 
onto their second floor of operations! A tiny room was 
perched atop the I-beams of the diner, cloaked in 
corrugated metal. It is to this day the tiniest restaurant 
I have ever seen.
So I sign off this week with a rallying cry (and I guess 
a bit of a gushy love letter) for markets. In their very 
humble way, they are among our cities’ most important
 assets.
____________________________________________________

HRN logo 
Tune in to a fresh episode
 of Cutting the Curd TODAY
from 5:30-6:00pm on the
Heritage Radio Network,
or download the show as a
 podcast and listen anytime!
Got questions for Cutting the Curd?
Ideas for future shows? Tell us what you want to hear!
 Email us at info@heritageradionetwork.com!
________________________________________________________________

Cheese of the Month Club 
Gotta give a gift? Send the gift of cheese to someone you love! 
Visit saxelbycheese.com for our full selection of cheesy packages, gift certificates, and more! We ship all across the country, so what are you waiting for?
________________________________________________________________

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Saxelby Cheesemongers | Essex Market | 120 Essex Street | New York | NY | 10002


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Cheese and Culture!

This Week at Saxelby Cheesemongers: 
Cheese & Culture! 
Paul Kinstedt’s 11,000 year History 
of Cheese on Cutting the Curd… 
Plus Saxelby’s Less Scholarly Favorite 
Historical Anecdotes 
From the Aforementioned Text.

To say that humans and cheese have had a long 
and loving relationship is a bit of an 
understatement. Since time immemorial, 
we’ve been coaxing curds and whey into a 
mind-boggling array of fantastic cheeses, fresh, aged,
and at times freakish. 
Today on Cutting the Curd, we have the 
privilege of talking with professor Paul Kinstedt 
about his new book‘Cheese & Culture’ 
which will make its debut in March of this year
from Chelsea Green Publishing. The book chronicles 
our rich and buttery cheese history, all the way back 
to the fertile crescent. Here are some of our favorite 
historical accounts of famous cheesemakers and cheese 
eaters that you may not (or may very well have!) 
heard before, compliments of Mr. Kindstedt’s research…

cyclops
Monster or Cheesemaker?

In Homer’s ‘The Odyssey’ 
Odysseus and his crew land on 
the isle of Sicilyin search of the 
feared and terrible Cyclops. 
They galumph around for a 
while until they find his dwelling 
place which, SURPRISE! is home 
to a tidy little cheesemaking 
operation. The heroes hide out in 
the cave untilthe Cyclopsreturns 
(as my sister Megan 
would say,a potentially bad life 
choice) but luckily for them, the monster doesn’t
see them and begins his daily ritual of making cheese, coagulating the curd and pressing it into woven baskets.

Moral of the story: 
Don’t hate on monsters. They like cheese too!
Fast forward to France in the year AD 800-ish. 
The Emperor Charlemagne and his entourage are 
trekkingthrough France, probably en route to some
medieval military special ops. They get waylaid, 
and stop at a monastery for the night. The abbot, 
being rightly surprised by their arrival, is forced to 
make a fancy dinner party on the fly. 
(Remember this story the next time you’re stressed 
about people coming over for dinner… at least 
they’re not Charlemagne.) Now, it being a last minute thing,
and the fact being that good Catholics don’t eat meat on 
certain days made for a pretty tough dinner order for the 
abbot to fill. He sagely concluded that they’d serve cheese 
for dinner, and brought out a stinky wheel of something 
or other for the nobility to enjoy. 

charlemagne
Why didn’t I eat the rind?!

 

So, the story goes that Charlemagne
dug into the cheese with great relish,
cutting off the rind and scooping out 
the gooey paste within. The abbot 
watched in dismay, and after a few 
more bites, dared to inquire what in 
the heck the Emperor thought he was 
doing. In a nice way of course. The 
gist of the conversation was 
something like this: 
‘Why are you cutting off the rind, sir? 
Don’t you know that’s the best part?!’ 
Moral of that story: Eat the rind. 
Monks know a thing or two about cheese. 
Tune in to Cutting the Curd today from 5:30 to 6:00 for a 
sneak peak at this incredible new book, and stay tuned for 
an NYC book release party with Saxelby Cheesemongers!
Till next week, eat cheese and be merry!
____________________________________________________

HRN logo 
Tune in to Cutting the Curd
every Monday
from 5:30-6:00pm
on the
 Heritage Radio Network,
or download the show as a
podcast and listen anytime!
Got questions for Cutting the Curd?
Ideas for future shows?
Tell us what you want to hear!
Email us at info@heritageradionetwork.com!
________________________________________________________________

Cheese of the Month Club 
Gotta give a gift? 
Send the gift of cheese
to someone you love! 
Visit saxelbycheese.com 
for our full selection of
cheesy packages, 
gift certificates,
                                             and more!
We ship all across the country, 
 so what are you waiting for?
________________________________________________________________

 logo
saxelbycheese.com
saxelbycheese.blogspot.com
Check out Saxelby Cheesemongers as featured in the New York Times!

Find us on Facebook
Follow us on Twitter

Join Our Mailing List

This email was sent to anne@saxelbycheese.com by info@saxelbycheese.com |  

Saxelby Cheesemongers | Essex Market | 120 Essex Street | New York | NY | 10002

Wednesday 61 Local!


This Week at Saxelby Cheesemongers: Beer & Cheese at 61 Local, My Cheesy Valentine, and the State of Cheese in Oklahoma!

Beer Washed Cheese Tasting! Wednesday, February 8th,  7-9pm 61 Local Public House
 
 
 
 
 61 local beer washed cheese
 
Saxelby Cheesemongers & Sixpoint Craft Ales are gearing up for a one of a kind fermentation celebration! 
 
Come to 61 Local this Wednesday, February 8th to taste four beer-washed cheeses aged by Saxelby Cheesemongers paired with the Sixpoint brews they’ve been bathed with: Signal, a limited edition smoked IPA, Gorilla Warfare, a coffee porter made with Ethiopia Yirgacheffe roasted by Gorilla Coffee in Park Slope, Gemini, a lighter and zestier IPA, and Dinkle, Sixpoint’s one-year-old spelt wine. 
The cheese & beer will be rounded out by a spread of snackables from 61’s lineup of local goodies, and plenty of good company!
This tasting will be the first in a series exploring some of Brooklyn’s finest fermented beverages! 
Stay tuned for future tastings and events…
____________________________________________________
matches made in heaven Matches Made in Heaven: The Perfect Valentine’s Gift!
 
Three farmstead cheeses paired with six Nunu chocolate truffles. $69 plus shipping. To order, click here.
This Valentine’s Day, Saxelby Cheesemongers and Nunu Chocolates have joined forces to bring you a sweet & savory treat that’s sure to make your Valentine swoon: Our ‘Matches Made in Heaven’ gift box! We’ve been playing cupid with pairings of delicious farmstead fromage and handmade chocolate truffles that are rich enough to make even that little winged guy blush. Whether it’s for your sweetie, or some lucky cheese lover that you love, they’re sure to find a match made in heaven in this little box.
Each Matches Made in Heaven gift box includes three half-pound wedges of cheese, six Nunu chocolates, and a special pairing guide, all wrapped up in a beautiful re-usable wooden box. 
Orders must be placed by Tuesday 2/7 by midnight for shipping on Thursday 2/9. Or by Saturday 2/11 by midnight to be shipped on Monday 2/13 All orders will be shipped FedEx standard overnight.

Orders can also be picked up at the Essex Street Market! Just choose ‘In store pickup’ when checking out and write a note in the comments box to let us know when you’ll be stopping by!

____________________________________________________
HRN logo
This week on Cutting the Curd, we’ll head to Oklahoma to see what’s doing in the world of cheese and dairy! We’ll be joined by Suzy Thompson and Steve Reynolds, owners of Forward Foods to chat about their fabulous shop, and what they’re excited about in their local cheese world.
Got questions for Cutting the Curd? Ideas for future shows? Email us at info@heritageradionetwork.com!
____________________________________________________
Cheese of the Month Club 
Gotta give a gift? Send the gift of cheese to someone you love! 
Visit saxelbycheese.com for our full selection of cheesy packages, gift certificates, and more! We ship all across the country, so what are you waiting for?
________________________________________________________________

 logo
saxelbycheese.com
saxelbycheese.blogspot.com
Check out Saxelby Cheesemongers as featured in the New York Times!

Find us on Facebook
Follow us on Twitter

Join Our Mailing List

This email was sent to anne@saxelbycheese.com by info@saxelbycheese.com |  

Saxelby Cheesemongers | Essex Market | 120 Essex Street | New York | NY | 10002