The folks in houston are serious about food, really serious. And the city, the fourth largest in the country, just received some long overdue recognition; Anthony Bourdain recently came to town to film an episode of his popular television show.
When I arrive at Sprout Creek Farm in New York’s Hudson Valley just outside of Poughkeepsie, it’s snowing for the first time this season. The grey sky blankets the farm’s rolling 200 acres with gentle white flurries. The last of fall’s vibrant foliage blazes from the trees. It’s gorgeous here.
Recently, I made a spontaneous decision to travel to Lebanon, which turned out to be a revelation in cheesemaking. This was prompted by my partner, who was attending a last-minute wine trip in the country during a week we were planning to spend together.
After he asked me what I thought about joining him on an excursion to this Middle Eastern country, it took just a split second of consideration before I booked my flights. Prior to leaving, however, I began my research and discovered that Lebanon was richer in its food and wine culture than I could ever imagine. Of course, being a cheese professional, my vested interest was in this region’s cheese scene.
If you’re anything like me, you’ll agree that one of the very best parts of winter is skiing. But it’s not just the swooshing down the slopes that gets me excited for snow; it’s also the culture surrounding ski resorts. There are the woodsy, rustic alpine cabins nestled into the sides of the slopes, where dark IPAs flow from brass taps. And there are the chic wine bars, circled around fire pits, where women in black spandex pants and white furry hats sip pinot noir in the cold. And of course, there are the countless cabins, where exhausted skiers doze off fireside, with mugs of hot chocolate in their hands. Continue reading →
As an internationally renowned heavyweight, Wisconsin is the Midwest’s undisputed champion of cheese. But don’t overlook its scrappy western neighbor. In Minneapolis, an urban creamery, a vibrant dining scene and bustling cheese shops put Minnesota on the cheese enthusiast’s map. True, winters can be brisk, but that’s nothing a locally-sourced cheese plate or a bubbling pot of fondue can’t fix.
Appenzellerland, set between the Alps and Lake Constance in the northeast region of Switzerland, is a place where traditions are closely guarded and time is a relative term. In fact, as I walk through the car-free village of Appenzell, with its candy colored, chalet-style houses, quaint restaurants and whimsical displays of garden elves lining the sidewalks, it’s the anachronism of brightly clad tourists taking selfies on their iPhones that reminds me I’m actually in the 21st century.