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News, commentary, criticism and praise for the College on the Hill, enlivened with history, culture and travel when we feel so moved.
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The Vermont Butter & Cheese Creamery
One of the tests of a quality food is whether it is inert or alive: does a wine’s bouquet and flavor change over the course of a meal — and over the years; do tomatoes get riper; will apple cider get fizzy and develop an agreeable bite after a few days in the fridge (hint: it needs to be unpasteurized in order to do this properly)? The question is most importantly asked of cheese. Does it evolve over time, too?
Once each month, we order butter and a dozen small wooden boxes of our favorite cheese, Bonne Bouche, directly from the Vermont Butter & Cheese Creamery in Barre, Vermont. The cheese can sometimes sit in our 53° cheese and fruit fridge for four weeks or more. Not only does Vermont B&C’s cheese last all of that time, but it improves by becoming softer, creamier and more complex. I don’t think that we have ever had a piece that has gotten too old. In contrast, industrial cheese just get moldy and takes on the sharp taste of ammonia that signals rot, rather than life and successful aging.
(Note: don’t store cheese in your regular fridge; at 35-40Â°, the average refrigerator is too cold for cheese, which will lose its texture and stop aging at low temperatures. Most people in France keep cheese in their cellar, or if they live in old apartments, they store it in their kitchen’s indoor/outdoor cupboard that has a grill open to the outdoors.)
Vermont B&C’s is an excellent example of a company that has given birth to an entire agricultural ecosystem. The founders Allison Hooper and Bob Reece buy goat’s milk from 30 different farms in the Barre area, most of whom did not raise goats at all until the company suggested to them that it would provide a ready market for their milk. Their cheese is sold all over the country to consumers and restaurants, and they have worked closely with several well-known chefs to make special cheeses used in French cuisine.
Our favorite cheese shop in Paris sells over one hundred different cheeses, and we’d be happy to order Bonne Bouche there, too. It is the only cheese made in New England that meets this test.
JOE MALCHOW notes that the West Coast regularly produces cheeses which win success on the world stage. Cypress Grove in Humboldt County, California is one to try. Absent the sucking leechlike vacua of Ben & Jerry’s, it seems, good fromage Américain is possible. Down with Vermont; long live sustainable dairying!
August 14, 2013
Breaking: Of Crips and Bloods and Memories of Ghetto Parties
History repeats itself, first as tragedy and then as farce, or sometimes it just repeats itself. From the New York Times on November 30, 1998: At Dartmouth College, white students at a ”ghetto party” dressed…
June 25, 2013
Dean of the College Charlotte Johnson’s War on Students Part (2/2)
Part 1, Part 2 Today’s post again recounts the events that befell the Freshman. However, the content of the Hanover Police department report reproduced in this space yesterday is supplemented by information from my own…
October 18, 2009
When Love Beckoned in 52nd Street
We were at San Francisco’s BIX last evening, enjoying prosecco, cheese, and a bit of music. A full year of inhabitation in Northern California has unraveled to me no decent venue for proper lounging, but…
October 9, 2009
D Afraid of a Little Competish
So our colleague and Dartblog writer Joe Asch informed me that the D has rejected our cunning advertising campaign. Uh-oh. The Dartmouth is widely known as a breeding ground for instant New York Times successes,…
September 4, 2009
How Regents Should Reign
As Dartmouth alumni proceed through the legal hoops necessary to defuse a Board-packing plan—which put in unhappy desuetude an historic 1891 Agreement between alumni and the College guaranteeing a half-democratically-elected Board of Trustees—it strikes one…
August 29, 2009
Election Reform Study Committee
If you are an alum of the College on the Hill, you may have received a number of e-mails of late beseeching your input for a new arm of the College’s Alumni Control Apparatus called…
- The Dartmouth College Case
- 2007 Trustee Election
- Dartmouth Constitution
- Sunday Morning Sinatra
- The Indian Wars
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