Thursday, August 25, 2005

The Cheese Sisters

A story worth reading

photograph picture of open Serena cheese sandwich with Acme pain au levain and three girls farmstead cheese The week before last I featured a locally made cheese called Serena, made by Three Girls Farmstead. I discovered this cheese over six months ago and it made a memorable impression so I wanted to rediscover it for Eat Local month. "I am trying to find this local cheese, a little bit gruyerish, and it begins with an S", I said to the girl helping me at Cowgirl Creamery. "You must mean Serena", she replied, giving me a sample. Yes I did. The 'Cow Girl' went on to explain to me the charming sounding story of a young sister making cheese from the milk produced at her parents' farm. I was intrigued, I wanted to know more, but their website was coy on details about the girl behind the Cheese. I was delighted, therefore, when yesterday The Chronicle ran an article about Marisa Hilarides Simoes, the young cheesemaker who recently picked up a coveted first prize in the American Originals category from the American Cheese Society for her latest cheese, Bella Sorella recently renamed Serenita.

Read the whole article on SFGate here.

Locavores August Eat Local Challenge 2005

PS. After over four and a half years of working in Marin, today is my last day. I am a little sad to be leaving the sunshine for the fog of The Presidio, but I am really excited about working in the City, starting next week. No prizes for guessing where I'll be eating my last ever Marin lunch later today.

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The Cheese Sisters


  • At 25/8/05 07:48, Blogger Amy Sherman said…

    Although you have to cross a bridge, you can go back to Marin anytime you want. But you will love living (and especially eating) in the City!

  • At 25/8/05 08:22, Blogger Farmgirl Susan said…

    It always amazes me how you manage to put so many interesting links in every single one of your posts. Thank you for taking the time to do this!

    P.S. Re the new job location: just think of all the money you'll be able to spend on cheese instead of bridge tolls. . . : )

  • At 25/8/05 09:17, Blogger cookiecrumb said…

    And... No prize goes to Cookiecrumb, for her guess of Tabla!
    Besides, what a great last day for Marin: all cool and foggy to help ease the transition.
    (Glad you caught the cheese story; I was gonna tip you off but I knew you'd see it.)

  • At 25/8/05 11:45, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    While I understand the bittersweetness of it all, just think -- a WHOLE new neighborhood to explore!

    And, you can always hit Tabla on your way to wine country. (Or, perhaps in your case, going to wine country can be the EXCUSE for going to Tabla!)

  • At 25/8/05 14:54, Blogger Monkey Gland said…

    It all means nothing to me, suppose I should look it up on Google Earth, but commiserations anyway and congratulations too, which ever you feel like having ;-)

    But the cheese, ah the cheese...

  • At 25/8/05 16:16, Blogger Rachael Narins said…

    I read that article yesterday and recalled you mentioning that cheese. I was so impressed such a young woman could do such a grand thing as create a cheese. I am humbled.

    As for the move, it will be a blast. Enjoy!

  • At 25/8/05 17:08, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    Hi Sam, I just wanted to let you know that I read today's post and liked your shot of this bread and cheese so much I followed the link back to the original post (which I missed) to fully appreciate it. I think it's beautifully composed, with more than adequate exposure levels and a perfect depth of field which nicely throws the cheese wedge and knife out of focus (this effect of course being very en vogue in food editorial photography!). The 'constructive comments' left by a certain cheesy person in LA had us both in stitches! Anyone who knows the first thing about photography can see you know what you're doing! Keep up the good work ;)

    (And sorry, I'm keeping myself anonymous to avoid attracting certain photo critics to my blog!)

  • At 25/8/05 19:52, Blogger Lady Amalthea said…

    Thanks so much for including that story, Sam! It was great and really interesting to read how cheese is made. Also mind-blogging that such a young woman is doing it, all from what she and her Dad learned in one class.

    I'm in SF through Sunday and I'll definitely try and find my way down to Cowgirl Creamery to try this (now famous) cheese.

    And enjoy your move! You can always go back to Marin but I'm sure you'll love working in the city, and all the new work-lunch opportunities it'll offer.

  • At 25/8/05 22:38, Blogger Dive said…


    Frankly I think you may feel more isolated in the Presidio than in Marin. However, the Presidio does offer the electric Carshare go-carts that you can wiz on down to Lombard with and check out some of the cool places down there. I once had my picture taken in a sleazy motel there. Uh. Yeah.

    Even if you feel it's slightly more boring than Marin, you can always bring your lunch and hang out in the old timey Pet Cemetary there.

    Doesn't that sound fun!

    Also, while you're there, please discover one of those abandoned, old military storage tunnels that we all hear about. It would be a great location for my next great project - Dead End Dining: Rogue Semi-Legal Dining Adventures.


  • At 25/8/05 23:10, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    Sam -- I talked with Serena when she first started cheesing and she is as delightful now as she was then. I so admire these young women jumping into the world of artisan cheesemaking.

    Sorry we didn't connect sooner while you were doing lunches in Marin; had hoped we might get together. Know you'll adapt quickly to the new professional digs (envy you that dramatic space) and now you'll have more to report to us from the big city.

  • At 26/8/05 09:44, Blogger Sam said…

    Amy - I think the only reason I cross the bridge I because I have to. I like to, don't get me wrong, but I am not sure I am going to be going to Marin very often. I have been living in the city for 4 years anyhow, and I used to live very near you so I was more familiar back then with the North side of SF. Now I live on the South side of SF it will be nice to have to go to the N side, and rediscover all those good places around Chestnut & Union. And I hope you'll be able to meet me for lunch sometimes now!

    FG - unfortunaltey I wont be saving anything on bridge tools. Although Fred & I went to work over the GGBridge, we returned back over the Richmond/Bay Bridges using the carpool lane and thereby not having to pay any tolls. That is how we have been affording the cheese since we met!

    CC - Ok - yes - no prize for you, big time for the correct guess of Tabla. I had The grapefruit and avocado salad with Cowgirl Cottage cheese and chilli jam plus some of their delicious home made mint choc chip ice cream and an absolutley slurpticious watermelon fresca. I also took my office mates their last round of the decadent chcolate brownies. Have you been there yet?
    Get a move on - you only have a few days left to eat locally ;p

    Jennifer - You bet your bottom dollar I know about Desiree. No prizes for guessing where I'll be going to lunch on Monday.

    Fatemeh - I expect sometimes I will journey to Tabla for lunch anyhow, though the $5 bridge cover is a bit steep. My doctors office is a few blocks from Tabla and I am seriously considering not changing it so I have an excuse to stop by Tabla whnever I have an appointment!

    Monkey Gland - here is a simple explanation. SF is a small city that is curiously covered in thick grey fog all summer. All around the city, there is sunshine. Just not in the city, which is where I live. Currently I go to work about 16 miles North of SF, over the Golden Gate Bridge, where the sunshine rarely fails. Next week my office moves to the foggiest part of this foggy town. But... there are gonna be some great new dining options in the vicinity so all, certainly, is not lost.

    Racahel - it's such an amazing story. And well, she looks so cute too.

    Anonymous - thank you - I don't think it was my best picture ever, but not as bad as the cheesemonger made out. He's harmless and only trying to help. Maybe I can guess who you are???

    Lady A - hope you are having fun in our fair city. Good luck in Cow Girl - I don't seem to be able to get out of there without spending $30!

    Bacon Press - but I can go bowling at lunchtime, right?? You didn't think of that, did you?

    Kudzu - I am sure we can find a way to hook up anyhow. I was kind of sorry you couldn't make it to the picnic in the end.


  • At 26/8/05 09:57, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    Ha ha, maybe you can guess! Do you need any clues? I'll give you one: I live in a city that is experiencing one enormous month-long festival at the moment!


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