I’m not a foodie, bloggie, chef or connoisseur, this blog speaks of good but nameless cheeses, good company, and how everything comes together to create a perfect blend of tastes and experience.
Sofitel celebrated Bastille Day with 101 Cheeses. I know nothing about cheeses, except eating them. That’s why when Billie, Reggie and Mars decided to go, I knew it was an ‘eat and learn’ experience. Also, a day before the event itself, I found out that another online friend, Ian, will be going. When you’re in the company of people who know and love their food, nothing can go wrong.
After all, bottomless cheese, bottomless cold cuts and bottomless wine means an entire night of overstuffing – right? Not really.
If you know your cheeses, you can just dive right in and select what you want. However, to enjoy the entire experience, the cheese buffet was divided into three parts. The there’s the first plate wherein they gave us 6 bite size pieces of the mildest cheeses; the second plate that had 3 goat cheese and 3 ‘cow’ cheeses that were flavorful; the third plate was mostly made up of creamy Brie cheeses (including one that was made out of real truffles); and the fourth plate that had aromatic, pungent or spicy ones.
This is where the beauty of eating with friends comes in. You have them telling you, “try this cheese with this fruit”, “try this wine with that cheese”, “bite into it along with this fruit”, “don’t use the truffle honey with the mild ones – it will overpower the taste”. In fact on the second plate, half had to be taken with white wine, the ones made from goat’s milk; while the ones made from cow’s milk had to be taken with red wine.
Everybody was after the taste, the texture and the subtle nuances that made the cheese different. If it were me I’d just spread it on a cracker and eat it. But after last night, I learned that you can eat just the cheese and eating them one after the other does, and building a different blend in the mouth that creates a perfect harmony – in other words, “you had a perfect plate of cheese”. There are times when it would go with a dried apricots, dates and peanuts. There are also times when chewing on a pickle will help you cleanse the palette than taking in the wine.
It also helps to ask the people, specially if you have the French Cheese Ambassador, Maître Fromagier Gérard Poulard himself selecting the cheeses for each plate.
In this life, everyone else is just passing through. That’s why we have to make time to spend it with people who treat us right, genuinely care, who make us happy, and yes, people who can eat without reservation. Those who can help you notice how food truly tastes and the pleasure it gives.
I was fortunate to have all of that in one night. Life may not be perfect, but it does have perfect moments.