Sunday, September 6, 2009

Coffee and Cheese? (an article submission... oo! fancy!)

We often think of coffee as company for our dessert plate, something bitter to break the sweet. But I recently discovered that coffee can break the back of just about anything rich, including cheese! Imagine your favorite cheese, maybe it's velvety and slightly sweet, or sharp and requires a little bit of dental work. Now, chase it with a bright and slightly acidic blend of coffee or maybe the satisfyingly smooth dark organic roast with that wonderful smoky aroma. Yes, coffee and cheese. I discovered this on a long overdue break one day at my most recent cafe. I needed the jolt of a great cup of coffee, but I also needed to EAT! Lunch slash dinner doesn't usually involve a muffin for me so I chose a grilled cheese and tomato sandwich with a dark roast organic coffee.

The combination of the crusty bread and three melted cheeses was heavenly on my palate after a rough morning and even worse afternoon. And then I drank, expecting to make a foul face, but was pleasantly surprised. My eyes closed, my mouth hugged the combination of flavors and a new habit was born! Coffee and cheese! Brilliant! Sweet and bitter are obvious friends. But who knew salty and bitter could be buds? This relationship is more about texture and underlying flavor. Cheese, like coffee, is anything but simple. It can be sweet and fruity or smoky and nutty. Pairing the two is a match uncommon, but truly under utilized. Next time you stop by your local cafe for a shot of espresso, bring along a snack of some fresh green grapes and some of your favorite cheese. Your taste buds will delight, and you may even find that your cookie habit can be dismissed. And while you're at it, the wine too! Coffee is the new cab.

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