Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Cheese, Gromit!

Everyone knows the moon is made of cheese, Gromit.

The other night HRH took me to this really cute place nearby called Emporio Santa Terezinha - in the middle of the week! - to look around and get a little something to eat. Yes, dear reader, I inspire this kind of devotion and affection. This place is a deli as well as a restaurant. One of the coolest things you can do there is order some of their exceptional cold cuts, cheeses and artisanal bread, olive oil, a glass of wine, and you're good to go.

It's very reasonably priced and the environment is very pleasant. It feels like you're in Spain or Italy, rustic and quaint. It's very laid back and casual. We ordered the items I mentioned above, but many people there were eating sandwiches too. Apparantly they made killer sandwiches - nice to know. We ordered some cured ham, salami, Grana Padano and a cheese we had never tried - there are so many different kinds of cheeses! - called Prima Donna. It's a type of Gouda that is aged 2 years (instead of like 6 or something, which is the standard aging period for Gouda) and is exceptional. It's soft and firm, sharp and mild. It's really a very perfect cheese and matches perfectly with good red wine. It was a delight. Grana Padano has been a fave or ours for a while now. It's so nutty and delish. It's hard the way parmesan is, but not as salty, and way more nutty. It's rich, completely stands on its own, and very, very good. It's grainy, in the best possible way, because it just becomes creamy as you eat it.

We had a great time and actually brought the rest home because we ended up ordering too much. What am I saying? How can one order too much manna from Heaven? Last night we set out the "left overs" - if you can even call them that - some wine, bread and olive oil and had a "picnic" style dinner in front of the TV watching one of our fave shows.

I'll be doing that again soon. I see many trips to Santa Terezinha in our very near future. It's a great place to take friends as well, and just talk, laugh, drink, eat, and be merry!

This is what has to say about Prima Donna: Prima Donna is a relatively mild style of a Dutch Gouda cow's milk cheese that is aged for one year. As compared to a four- or six-year Gouda, Prima Donna has a distinctly softer texture and a more subtle flavor. It has an ivory rind with a slight rose blush, a crystalline texture, and a sweet, nutty flavor with a caramel aftertaste. Prima Donna is a versatile cheese for pairing with wines yet it pairs especially well with bigger reds such as Cabernet Sauvignon or Zinfandel.

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