first of all, i just want to make sure that everyone took a look at danielle pergament's lovely article about spanish cheeses, with a special nod to semi-aged basque sheepsmilk cheeses.
this bit was perhaps my favorite:
We were in the foothills of Picos de Europa, where everything is vertical: the sheer mountain faces, the steep pine trees, the skinny roads dotted with tiny cars nervously hugging the shoulders, flocks of sheep perched on the rocky lands, lone goats standing expertly on their hind legs munching from a thicket of low-hanging leaves, a cacophony of cowbells and beams of sunlight warming it all. Cheese country.
you don't encounter lyricism like that in the nyt every day. especially not since johnny apple passed away.
secondly, (parents, plug your ears): the pig dinner with jude becker was amazing. nights like last night are why we do what we do: having the place full of our friends, farmers, cooks, butchers--people we love and respect--is indescribably hedonistic. jude had a lot to do with the piece i just wrote, and i'm really happy that he's enjoying such a warm reception around here these days.
thirdly, i have some goooood ideas in the works for pieces i want to work on. i'm thinking big here, and even though i know i might be let down, i'm going to hope for integrity and good juju from all sides. if things work out, 2009 will be awesome.
also, check out veller's awesome cuban sandwiches made in a really, really old waffle iron. with a ham from her own pig and homemade pickles from her own cukes, naturally: