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I'm a cheesehead.  No, not a Wisconsin Cheesehead like our own dear and determined Puddytat and the many, many others of the Wisconsin Insurgency.  

Just a cheese aficionado from boring Portland Oregon, which is at least not boring Boring, Oregon.  Anyway, when I was a kid in the 1870s, we had two kinds of cheese: orange cheese and the white cheese with holes in it, which mysteriously was called "Swiss."

But lately I've discovered that the world is full of cheesy surprises!  Mrs. Peril and I stopped by one of our local markets, a wonderfully run locally-owned chain called New Seasons, which has a splendid cheese selection.  Gouda, Camenbert, Rochefort, Gruyere -- whatever one is in the mood for.  

But cheese is expensive!  One has to be careful with one's cheesy dollars.  We selected a small piece of English Stilton, a somewhat harder blue-veined cheese -- wonderful!  

I should mention that the crackers for the cheese are important too.  IMHO one should avoid Ritz, Triscuit, Wheat Thins, etc.  These seem to have too much of flavor (artificial, I'm sure) that interferes with the cheese flavor.  I recommend a plain simple (but rather expensive, I warn you) cracker such as Carr's Table Wafers.  (Website says kosher too!)

We can't all afford car elevators.  But good cheese is little luxury that most people can afford from time to time.  

Some of the best cheese I've had, by the way, has come from the Washington State and Oregon State university agricultural programs.  It's very encouraging to think that young people (yes, I'm old enough to say that now) are developing their own cheeses, and maybe even going into the cheese business.

Please feel free in the comments to spread the word about your favorite cheese, and otherwise treat this as your All-Purpose Fermented Curd Open Thread.  

And finally, to get us in the mood, a visit to a shop vending cheesy comestibles:


What is your favorite kind of cheese?

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