My sister found a “Cheese 101″ class at The Cheese School in San Francisco for she, my mom, and I to experience while I was in town. It was great foodie fun! I came home with three pages of notes and far more knowledge about the intricacies of cheese-making than I’d ever expected to possess personally.
The best part was the set of three adorable postcards reading “A is for Appenzeller,” “B is for Brie,” “C is for Cheddar.” One was waiting cheerfully next to each place setting.
The Cheese School hosts a number of different classes, most ranging from $69 – $130 per person. Cheese 101 was enjoyable and informative. The instructor discussed plenty of basics and guided us through tasting eight different cheeses. My favorite was Toma della Rocca, a soft, slightly tangy cheese made from cow, goat, and sheep’s milks. It had a “mousse-like” texture and hailed from Piedmont, Italy. At first bite it reminded me a bit of cream cheese frosting, but maybe that was just me? It’s available at Oliver’s Markets in the North Bay.
Another class, Summer Entertaining with Cheese, also looked nice to me; it aims to tell you how to move beyond grapes and water crackers on cheese trays. I have dreams of impressive, creative, vegan appetizer trays with everything but cheese, but that will have to wait for a future post. :)
If you’d like The Cheese School to come to you, they are also available for catering and private gatherings like corporate events, cocktail parties, or weddings. They allow people to rent their space too, on the second floor of a building on Powell Street between North Beach and Fisherman’s Wharf. It’s a nice, bright space, with a large, long room for a U-shape arrangement of tables and chairs adjoining a smaller shop area. Everyone working there was friendly, and we enjoyed the casual atmosphere.
All in all, it was a nice evening and I’m glad we went. It was fun and refreshing to listen to someone speak passionately about a subject near and dear to her heart, and also to get a peek inside the cheese-lovers’ community and locally-minded projects and businesses near our home. If you’re looking for a something unique to do in San Francisco, or if you need a gift for a foodie in your life who lives around there, I would highly recommend a class at The Cheese School.