Why is it that a country that for so long was considered a backwater, as far as cuisine went, has become a beacon of light in the culinary world?
Proof. Neal's Yard Dairy London in Borough Market. It has to be the best cheese shop I have ever been in. Clearly, it is the stuff dreams are made of.
Walking inside is entering a cool temperature with a heady high note of? Sharp cheddar?
No small rounds here. No anonymous monikers. Here we get presented with huge wheels tagged with where the cheese came from, the names of who made it, or the farm it is from, and what has gone into it, and often the date. You feel like you know the cheese after you have read its tag, even before biting into a sample.
They are like modern shepherds guiding cheeses into the market from only 70 family farms throughout England and Ireland. Shepherds know their flock.
Translation of sign above: KG means kilos which equals 2.2 pounds. The price is 22.80 pounds sterling for 2.2 pounds, which equals approximately $35.96, or $16 per pound, which actually makes it pretty darn affordable if you buy half a pound of a cheese you could never get unless you traveled to the farm and that tastes as amazing as it looks and smells. For the sensory experience alone, $16 is pretty reasonable!
A deep Leicester "made by David and Jo Clarke at Sparkenhoe Farm".
Like shelves of library books, everywhere you look…..
Stacked neatly, vertically, horizontally, hidden away in Neal's Yard maturing cellars nearby…..
I took home some Wigmore…..I can't even find the words to describe what it tasted like when I smeared it on a fresh baguette. Soft. Heavenly. Delicious!
I also caved for some of these goats cheeses…….!
And imagine getting hand churned butter like this with such a beautiful embossed image on it. I mean, art meets palette. I took this home as well.
In the near future I will share with you my other discoveries in London, culinary ones that is. A beacon of light for the culinary world, showing the way clearly through the fog. I can't wait to go back. Neil's Yard Dairy London.