In the Bay Area we pride ourselves on our knowledge of wine, chocolate and cheese. We have wonderful producers as well as experts. When it comes to American cheese, one of our local aficionados is Laura Werlin. She's the author of a number of books on the subject and has a thorough knowledge of producers and retailers. Her most recent excellent book on the subject, Laura Werlin's Cheese Essentials is a combination cookbook and buying guide with great descriptions, explanations of styles, and tasting notes.
Restaurant Parcel 104, a restaurant specializing in seasonal, farm-fresh American fare will be holding a Cheese and Wine Dinner, featuring local artisan cheeses from around California on November 8th. Renowned Bay Area chefs Chris Schloss of Cin-Cin Wine Bar in Los Gatos, and Mark Dommen from One Market in San Francisco, and Arthur Wall of The Restaurant at Wente Vineyards will each develop a course inspired by a specific cheese.
Parcel 104 executive chef Robert Sapirman will be working with noted cheesemonger John Raymond of Raymond & Co. and cheesemongers will personally select which cheeses will be used. Laura Werlin will coordinate the appetizers for the cocktail hour using recipes from her books. Werlin will also be on hand to talk to guests about cheese, and sign cookbooks.
What: 6th Annual Cheese & Wine Dinner
When: Saturday, November 8, 2008
Where: Parcel 104 at the Santa Clara Marriott, 2700 Mission College Boulevard, Santa Clara
How: $145 plus tax and gratuity. Book online via OpenTable or call 408-970-6104.
Here's a recipe is adapted from Laura Werlin's Cheese Essentials that is just right for cold Fall and Winter nights.
Reblochon and Potato Tartiflette
4 slices, thick sliced bacon, cut crosswise into 1/4 inch pieces or use 1/4 pound pancetta 1 medium onion sliced 1/4 inch thick 1 pound Yukon Gold or other waxy potatoes, peeled and sliced crosswise 1/4 inch thick Salt Freshly ground pepper 5 ounces Reblochon cheese, cut into 1/4 inch slices 1/2 cup cream
Preheat the oven to 375 degrees in a medium saute pan cook the bacon until brown and crisp. Drain on paper towel lined plate. Remove all but 1 tablespoon fat saute the onions in bacon fat until soft but not brown, about 5 minutes. Place half the potato slices in a 9-inch pie plate or shallow oval pan. Sprinkle with a touch of salt and pepper (remember that the cheese and bacon are both salty). Sprinkle half the onions over the potato slices followed by half the bacon, and half the cheese. Repeat with remaining potatoes, onions bacon and cheese. Pour cream over the top and around the edges.
Cover with foil and bake for 30 minutes. Remove foil and cook for 20 minutes or until the potatoes are soft and the tartiflette is brown and bubbly. Let sit 15 minutes before servicing. This allows the cream and potatoes to set up (otherwise, it's too runny).
Serves 8 to 10